by Ian Marshall, Editor
The in vogue pendulum service technique the favoured option for Archana Girish Kamath, she secured the opening game; her balance and control being notable features of her play.
Following the principle of a safe first attack in the second game she established a commanding 7-3 lead; Andreea Dragoman reduced the gap to 9-6 and then won the next two points as Archana Girish Kamath became tentative and passive.
Subhajit Roy, the Indian national coach sitting courtside duly called “Time Out”; it appeared a prudent decision; at 10-8 Archana Girish Kamath held two game points, both were saved before on her second opportunity Andreea Dragoman seized the chance to level matters.
The tension was palpable but winning the close second game from a losing position had given Andreea Dragoman a major boost; in the third game she held game points at 10-8, she lost the next, called “Time Out” returned to the table and duly succeeded.
Now more confident, more positive in the rallies and returning service with more authority, Andreea Dragoman dominated the fourth game, she forced errors from Archans Girish Kamath.
One game away from victory, the fifth game was a tense affair, as throughout the contest rallies few and far between; at 9-all it was parity. It was at that stage a degree of fortune shone on the brow of Andreea Dragoman, a feint edge in her favour from a backhand top spin followed by Archana Girish Kamath serving into the net, brought the match to an anti-climactic end.
“I’m very happy with my performance. I have no words to describe how I feel right now! It was a tough match, Archana is a good player, I tried to look for her weakness and use it to my advantage and improve my game.” Andreea Dragoman
Bronze for Andreea Dragoman, the first ever medal in the table tennis events at a Youth Olympic Games for Romania and only the second for Europe; Frenchman Simon Gauzy secured the same colour in the Men’s Singles in 2010 in Singapore.