26 Jul 2018

Gold medallists at the Liebherr 2017 World Championships in Düsseldorf, Japan’s Maharu Yoshimura and Kasumi Ishikawa made a successful start to their campaign at the Seamaster 2018 ITTF World Tour Platinum Australian Open in Geelong on the morning of Thursday 26th July.

Likewise, the pair they beat in the final in the German city also negotiated the opening hurdle successfully; there was a first round win for Chinese Taipei’s Chen Chien-An and Cheng I-Ching. Furthermore, potentially they could meet again; they are in opposite halves of the draw.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Maharu Yoshimura and Kasumi Ishikawa, the no.2 seeds, beat India’s Sharath Kamal Achanta and Manika Batra (6-11, 11-9, 11-3, 11-7) to set their quest for honours in motion.

“After losing the first game, we tried to put more pressure on our opponents and to make a good combination between us; we also tried to counter attack more effectively.” Kasumi Ishikawa

“Yes, we tried to make returns so our opponents made more mistakes; we tried to concentrate on each shot in the match.” Maharu Yoshimura

Success for Maharu Yoshimura and Kasumi Ishikawa against what could be considered India’s leading partnership; for Chen Chien-An and Cheng I-Ching, the no.3 seeds, it was victory in opposition to the one and only Chinese partnership on duty. They beat Zhou Yu and Che Xiaoxi (11-9, 11-8, 11-7).

“Our performance was good in this match and we acted in tacit co-operation, we are doing better as a doubles pair, getting more and more understanding in matches. Our goal is of course to win the gold here in Geelong.” Chen Chien-An

Success as expected but there was one upset in the opening round of the Mixed Doubles event; Slovakia’s Lubomir Pistej and Barbora Balazova beat Spain’s Alvaro Robles and Galia Dvorak, the no.7 seeds (11-7, 11-4, 11-7).

Otherwise in the engagements that were required in the first round it was success for the seeded pairs; Korea Republic very much in evidence. Lee Sangsu and Jeon Jihee, the top seeds, accounted for India’s Amalraj Anthony and Madhurika Patkar (11-9, 11-8, 11-9); Lim Jonghoon and Yang Haeun, the no.4 seeds, ended the hopes of New Zealand’s Dean Shu and Cheng Zhiying (11-3, 11-2, 11-3).

Disappointment for Oceania, there was more; in the one remaining opening round Mixed Doubles contest that was needed, the host nation’s Ben Gould and Jee Minhyung experienced defeat at the hands of Singapore’s Gao Ning and Yu Mengyu, the no.6 seeds (7-11, 11-8, 13-11, 11-9).

At the quarter-final stage Lee Sangsu and Jeon Jihee meet Lubomir Pistej and Barbora Balazova; Chen Chien-An and Cheng I-Ching oppose Chuang Chih-Yuan and Chen Szu. In the opposite half of the draw Lim Jonghoon and Yang Haeun confront Australia’s Kane Townsend and Parleen Kaur, Maharu Yoshimura and Kasumi Ishikawa oppose Gao Ning and Yu Mengyu.

Chuang Chih-Yuan and Chen Szu in addition to Kane Townsend and Parleen Kaur were not required to raise their rackets in anger in the opening round; the quarter-final matches will be completed later in the day in the evening session of play.

World Tour 2018 Seamaster Australia Open Kasumi Ishikawa Cheng I-Ching Maharu Yoshimura Chen Chien-An

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Day 4 - Seamaster 2018 ITTF Australian Open

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