by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager
Progress for Xiang Peng, for Shi Xunyao who in addition to succeeding in Poland also won at the beginning of the year in the Czech Republic, it is even greater progress. She climbs three positions to secure the top berth (3,660 points) on the Girls’ Standings.
She is one place ahead of colleague Qian Tianyi (3,530 points), the player she beat in the Polish final but notably earlier in the year won in Italy.
It is a list dominated by China. Huang Fanzhen (3,500 points), the previous leader and winner in Thailand is next in line followed by Zhang Binyue (2,700 points); Zhang Binyue won in Oman and France.
Next on the list is Japan’s Yukari Sugasawa (2,474 points), followed by Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz (1,925 points) and Lucie Gauthier of France (1,922 points), a quarter-finalist in Poland. Serbia’s Sabina Surjan (1,442 points), Japan’s Yumeno Soma (1,370 points) and Prithika Pavade of France (1,332 points) complete the top ten names. Notably, Sabina Surjan won in Tunisia, Yumeno Soma succeeded in Sweden.
Similarly China dominates the Boys’ Standings; Xu Yingbin is in third place (2,986 points) being immediately pursued by Xu Haidong (2,760 points) and Yuan Licen (2,520 points). Impressively Xu Haidong won in Italy, Yuan Licen succeeded in Oman.
The top five places in Chinese hands, one more such name appears amongst the elite; Kuang Li, the winner in Thailand is at no.7 (1,880 points), one position behind Iran’s Amin Ahmadian (1,890 points), the champion in Tunisia.
Sweden’s Truls Moregard (1,796 points) is next on the list followed by Japan’s Takeru Kashiwa (1,645 points) and Brazil’s Guilherme Teodoro (1,510 points). Notably Truls Moregard won in Sweden, Takeru Kashiwa was the runner up in Slovakia, Guilherme Teodoro struck gold in Paraguay.
Matters concluded in Poland; the next tournament on the list is the Canada Junior and Cadet Open which commences on Monday 28th May.
Realistically, in order to gain a top 16 place and qualify for the end of campaign ITTF World Junior Circuit Finals, a top 12 finish has proved sufficient in past years.
However that number may well be lower. In each of the Boys’ Singles and Girls’ Singles events, no association may be represented by more than two players, the host association is allotted one place; each continent is eligible for at least one representative (Africa, Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America, Oceania) but to gain an invitation to the Finals, a player must have competed in two continents.