by Simon Daish
Starting the final day with a disappointing seven games defeat to Laurens Devos (12-10, 11-6, 5-11, 12-10, 7-11, 7-11, 11-8), but Cristian Pletea fought back with spirited displays against Kay Stumper (15-13, 11-9, 11-7, 11-8) and Tiago Li (11-9, 11-7, 11-4, 11-9) to lift the trophy for a second year running.
Matteo Mutti pulled off a terrific straight games success against third seed Irvin Bertrand (11-7, 11-9, 11-5, 11-6) and was just as ruthless in his encounter with no.5 seed Lev Katsman (11-8, 11-9, 11-6, 11-9), however, a defeat at the hands of top seed Rares Sipos (11-6, 11-5, 13-11, 11-8) saw the Italian miss out on the top prize in Vila Real.
Third position was reserved for France’s Irvin Bertrand while Laurens Devos, seeded ninth, impressed by finishing fourth overall. Considered a major challenger for the title heading into the tournament but Rares Sipos could manage no more than a fifth position finish ahead of Kay Stumper, Jules Rolland, Lev Katsman, Maciej Kolodziejczyk and Tiago Li.
For the third day in a row Sabina Surjan completed a trio of wins in the Junior Girls’ Singles competition to seal her spot on the top step of the medals podium. Winning a crucial encounter against Andreea Dragoman (7-11, 15-13, 11-7, 11-5, 11-8), top seed Sabina Surjan went on to account for Franziska Schreiner (8-11, 11-4, 11-6, 11-4, 11-8) and Anna Wegrzyn (12-10, 5-11, 11-6, 3-11, 6-11, 11-1, 11-6) to leave Vila Real undefeated.
Seeded fourth, Romania’s Andreea Dragoman recovered from her early setback to register victories over Anna Wegrzyn (12-10, 11-4, 11-7, 11-3) and Franziska Schreiner (12-10, 11-7, 5-11, 14-12, 11-2) to close her campaign with a solid second position finish.
Tania Plaian, like her fellow compatriot Andreea Dragoman, outperformed her seeding position with the no.5 seed earning two wins on the final day of play to claim the bronze medal with Poland’s Anna Wegrzyn and Germany’s Franziska Schreiner taking fourth and fifth positions respectively. Tijana Jokic, Zdena Blaskova, Lucie Gauthier, Andrea Pavlovic and Celia Silva round off the list.