04 Aug 2018

Bronze medallist in both Sweden and China gave Japan’s Haruna Ojio cause to celebrate; however on Friday 3rd August at the 2018 Hang Seng Hong Kong Junior and Cadet Open, the young lady from the Land of the Rising Sun had more than one reason to celebrate.

She caused the biggest upset in the initial stage of the Junior Girls’ Singles event, contrary to expectations she remained unbeaten to top the group and all on her 13th birthday, the day she became a teenager.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

In her opening match, she beat Chinese Taipei’s Wen Rue-Ling, the no.7 seed (11-7, 11-4, 6-11, 11-8), prior to securing top spot in the group, courtesy of success against Hong Kong’s Au-Yeung Mei Yun (11-7, 11-3, 11-3).

Earlier in the contest that started proceedings, Wen Ruei-Ling had beaten Au-Yeung Mei Yin (11-5, 11-8, 11-8) and thus finished in second position in the group. Players finishing in first and second positions in each group advanced to the main draw.

Success against the odds for Haruna Ojio on her 13th birthday, for colleague Fuwa Yumoto making her first ITTF World Junior Circuit appearance of the year, it was the same scenario; one week before her 13th birthday!

She beat Hong Kong’s Lee Ka Yee, the no.8 seed (16-14, 11-8, 11-8), followed by success against India’s Swastika Ghosh (11-5, 11-5, 12-10). Alas for Lee Ka Yee it was not the best of days; in addition she experienced defeat at the hands of Swastika Ghosh (7-11, 7-11, 11-5, 11-7, 11-9) and thus did not advance to the main draw.

First places contrary to status but amongst the leading names, it was first place with relative ease.

China’s Qian Tianyi and Shi Xunyao, the respective top two seeds, duly finished in top places in their groups as did their colleague, Zhang Binyue, the no.9 seed; likewise, there were top spots for Chinese Taipei’s Su Pei-Ling, the no.3 seed and Thailand’s Jinnipa Sawettabut, the no.4 seed.

Play in the Junior Girls’ Singles event will proceed to the semi-final stage on Saturday 4th August.

World Junior Circuit 2018 Hong Kong Junior & Cadet Open Haruna Ojio

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