by Ian Marshall, Editor
Making her first appearance at an ITTF World Junior Circuit tournament, the young lady who celebrated her 10th birthday just under one month ago on Saturday 16th June, beat Hong Kong’s Chelsea Chan Shiu Lam in a closely contested full distance five games final (11-6, 11-5, 4-11, 7-11, 11-5) to arrest the title.
The win for Miwa Harimoto reflects the progress that she has made in recent years; in 2012, the year she celebrated her fourth birthday, she reached the round of 64 in the Under 8 Years Girls’ Singles event at the Japanese National Championships. It was the same outcome in 2013, before in 2014 she was a semi-finalist and in 2015 the winner.
One year later in 2016, she had to settle for second place, before in 2017 being the Under 10 Girls’ Singles runner up.
Earlier this year in April, she won the Under 12 National Team selection round robin tournament; a most exacting competition comprising 32 players. She won 31 matches, losing just one!
Success for Miwa Harimoto contrary to expectations, in the counterpart Mini-Cadet Boys’ Singles event, it was success as per predictions. Hong Kong’s Yu Nok emerged victorious; the top seed, at the final hurdle he beat Iran’s Mohammad Amin Samadi (11-5, 13-15, 11-8, 11-6).
Now, the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games are just too soon but what of the Paris 2024 Olympic Games and the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic Games? Mixed Doubles – Tomokazu and Miwa Harimoto?