06 Oct 2018

Staged in Rarotonga, the largest of the Cook Islands, from Friday 1st to Saturday 2nd June, Australia’s Ben Gould and New Zealand’s Vong Hui Ling, emerged as the winners of the respective Boys’ Singles and Girls’ Singles events at the 2018 Oceania Junior and Cadet Championships.

Both are named on the entry list for the forthcoming Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games, play commencing in the Argentine capital city on Sunday 7th October; they line up alongside Nathan Xu, also from New Zealand and Fiji’s Grace Rosi Yee.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Notably, born in November 2003, Nathan Xu, who was a member of the Hopes Team at the 2014 ITTF World Cadet Challenge in Barbados, is the youngest player on view in Buenos Aires; moreover, like Ben Gould and Vong Hui Ling, he enjoyed success at this year’s Oceania Junior and Cadet Championships. He won the Cadet Boys’ Singles event.

Somewhat similarly, at the 2017 Australian Junior and Cadet Open in Tweed Heads, he was crowned Cadet Boys’ Singles champion; for his tender years, he is a seasoned competitor.

It is very much the same, even to a greater extent for Ben Gould. Just under one year ago he was in action at the 2017 ITTF World Junior Championships in Riva del Garda, notably he won the Fair Play Award donated by the Swaythling Club International; furthermore, some six months ago he was on duty at the Liebherr 2018 World Team Championships in Halmstad.

Valuable experience; for Vong Hui Ling, international exposure is somewhat less than her male counterparts, for Grace Rosi Yee it is arguably very similar. Earlier this year, Vong Hui Ling reached the quarter-final round of the Junior Girls’ Singles event at the Cook Islands Junior and Cadet Open; somewhat differently, Grace Rosi Yee was present at one of the biggest sporting gatherings of the year. She represented Fiji at the Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.

Furthermore for Grace Rosi Yee, she maintains family Olympic honour; her elder sister, Sally competed in the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, in the same year Grace Rosi was a member of the Oceania Team at the ITTF World Cadet Challenge in Shanghai.

Nathan Xu and Vong Hui Ling qualified for the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games following success at the Oceania Qualification tournament staged in Bendigo last November; Ben Gould received his invitation courtesy of World ranking, Grace Rosi Yee was awarded a National Olympic Committee Universality place.

In the Mixed International Team event, Ben Gould partners Grace Rosi Yee; Nathan Xu joins forces with Vong Hui Ling.

Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games Nathan Xu Grace Rosi Yee Ben Gould Vong Hui Ling

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Day 9 - Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games