by Ian Marshall, Editor
Occupying the no.4 seeded spot; he gave a scintillating display to beat Japan’s Maharu Yoshimura, the no.11 seed in four straight games (11-9, 11-6, 11-9, 11-8), a contest in which there was an air of revenge.
Intent on retaining his title in Olomouc in 2015, Marcos Freitas had been beaten in the penultimate round by Maharu Yoshimura.
Hopes of regaining the title remain alive for Marcos Freitas, so are the aspirations of Japan’s 15 year old Tomokazu Harimoto in retaining the title secured last year. The no.5 seed, he accounted for Vladimir Samsonov of Belarus, the no.10 seed, in seven games (11-7, 7-11, 11-6, 11-13, 11-4, 8-11, 11-5).
Yet again a close contest, yet again it was the same outcome. They first met on the Seamaster 2017 ITTF World Tour in China, this year they met at the Liebherr 2018 World Team Championships; last week they confronted each other in Bulgaria. All verdicts have finished in favour of Tomokazu Harimoto and with the exception of one week ago, when the decision was in six games, always the contests have gone the full distance.
Success for Marcos Freitas and Tomokazu Harimoto as seeding predicted; in the two remaining contests that completed the lower half of the draw it was the reverse scenario.
Germany’s Patrick Franziska, the no.9 seed beat his doubles partner, Jonathan Groth, the no.5 seed (11-9, 6-11, 11-7, 11-3, 9-11, 11-9); Austria’s Daniel Habesohn arguably matched Marcos Freitas for the performance of the round. Required to compete in the two day qualification tournament, he beat Kazakhstan’s Kirill Gerassimenko, the no.14 seed (12-10, 8-11, 13-11, 12-10, 11-6).
At the quarter-final stage, Marcos Freitas meets Daniel Habesohn, Patrick Franziska confronts Tomokazu Harimoto; the quarter and semi-final matches will be played on Saturday 25th August.