30 May 2018

The top seeds, favourites for gold, the combination comprising the Czech Republic’s Zdena Blaskova and Finland’s Annika Lundström justified that billing at the 2018 Canadian Junior and Cadet Open in Markham on Tuesday 29th May.

Intensely fought contests, with a somewhat extra special ingredient in the final; they beat China, a feat that does not happen every day and one they will always remember.

by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Manager

Against Li Yumeng and Lin Lequan in the decisive gold medal contest, Zdena Blaskova gave her team the ideal start by beating Li Yumeng (11-9, 11-7, 9-11, 11-8), before Lin Lequan accounted for Annika Lundström to level matters (11-6, 12-10, 11-7).

Parity, the European duo secured the doubles (11-7, 11-8, 11-8) to gain the ascendancy, before by the narrowest of margins, Annika Lundström ended matters by overcoming Li Yumeng (12-10, 6-11, 8-11, 11-6, 11-9).

A hard earned win, at the semi-final stage it was arguably even harder; a three-two margin of victory was the result in opposition to Canada’s Chen Yu-Hsuan and Ivy Liao.

Mainstay of the victory was Zdena Blaskova; she accounted for Chen Yu-Hsan in the opening match of the fixture (11-7, 11-8, 11-4), before in the vital fifth contest defeating and Ivy Liao (11-7, 11-7, 7-11, 13-11). The one further success for the victors was recorded by Annika Lundström; in the fourth match of the engagement, she overcame Chen Yu-Hsan (11-7, 11-9, 9-11, 11-3).

Victory in a full distance semi-final contest for the champions elect; for Li Yumeng and Lin Lequan in the same round, life had been much less exacting. They had recorded a three-nil win in opposition to the host nation’s Laura Lai and Joyce Xu.

Play in the Junior Girls’ Team event now concluded, attention turns to the Junior Girls’ Singles competition; a two day event, play concludes on Thursday 31st May.

World Junior Circuit 2018 Canadian Junior & Cadet Open Zdena Blaskova Annika Lundström

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