by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
At the final hurdle the duo beat most worthy opponents in the guise of Poland’s Przemyslaw Walaszek and Samuel Kulczycki, the no.6 seeds; they secured victory in a tension packed engagement determined by the minimal margin in the deciding game (11-13, 13-11, 15-13, 6-11, 16-14).
Testing times in the final, it was not much different en route; the place in the title deciding contest having been reserved following victories that stretched their capabilities but did not possess the same level of drama.
In the later stages, after accounting for Brazil’s Guilherme Teodoro and Rafael Torino, the no.7 seeds (4-11, 11-7, 7-11, 11-7, 11-7), they booked their place in the final courtesy of success against Chinese Taipei’s Peng Chih and Chen Jun-Ting (7-11, 11-5, 14-12, 12-10). Surprise semi-finalists, one round earlier Peng Chih and Chen Jun-Ting had caused a major upset by beating Argentina’s Martin Bentancor and Santiago Lorenzo, the no.3 seeds (11-6, 13-11, 5-11, 6-11, 11-5).
Meanwhile, in the opposite half of the draw, Przemyslaw Walaszek and Samuel Kulczycki had also upset the pecking order. They recorded a quarter-final success against Kapan’s Aoto Asazu and Takeru Kashiwa, the no.2 seeds (12-14, 11-8, 11-4, 11-7), before ousting Serbia’s Nemanja Dilas and Dimitrije Levajac, the no.12 seeds (3-11, 11-3, 11-7, 11-7), a pair in form.
Prior to recording a quarter-final success against the combination of Frenchman Jean Rassouw and Brazil’s Eduardo Tomoike, the no.5 seeds (11-7, 13-11, 3-11, 12-10), the Serbians had ended the hopes of the host nation by overcoming Stefan Peko and Jakub Zelinka, the no.4 seeds (11-8, 11-8, 5-11, 4-11, 11-2).
Play concluded in Senec; attention now turns to Wladyslawowo, the 2018 Polish Junior and Cadet Open commences on Wednesday 23rd May.