// Exception proves rule as principal names progress - International Table Tennis Federation


24 Oct 2018

Places in the main draw on offer, Pavel Platonov of Belarus, Korea Republic’s An Jaehyun and India’s Amalraj Anthony, leading names in the lower half of the draw in the preliminary round of the Men’s Singles event at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Belgium Open in De Haan, all emerged successful on the afternoon of Wednesday 24th October. Thus main draw places were booked.

The one exception to the rule was Egypt’s Mohamed El-Beiali. Listed at no.112 on the current Men’s World Rankings and the sixth highest rated player in the qualification tournament, he experienced defeat by the very narrowest of margins at the hands of Lithuania’s Tomas Mikutis, named at no.314 (8-11, 10-12, 11-3, 11-7, 11-13, 11-6, 11-9).

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Problems for Mohamed El-Beiali, there were no such heartaches for Pavel Platonov; he accounted for Nigeria’s Kazeem Nosiru (6-11, 11-4, 11-9, 11-7, 11-8).

A hard earned win for Pavel Platonov, it was the same for An Jaehyun against England’s Tom Jarvis (11-5, 11-9, 13-15, 11-9, 9-11, 11-8) but rather more comfortable for Amalraj Anthony. He recorded a straight games success opposition to the Dominican Republic pen-holder Wu Jiaji (12-10, 15-13, 11-4, 11-9).

“I played very well today and won four-nil. I am in the main draw that was my goal. Table tennis is on the rise in India. The sport is very popular. We have the Indian League but now we have also good results on the international scene. The federation and the coaches are working hard to bring our level to new heights. Here in Belgium, there are around 20 Indian players present. Two years ago Sathiyan Gnanasekaran won here in De Haan. I hope also to create an upset but I am taking it match by match.” Amalraj Anthony

The Indian team in De Haan (Photo: Ireneusz Kanabrodzki)


Success as expected for Amalraj Anthony; but there were upsets and upsets at the host nation’s expense. No current world ranking, Japan’s Takeru Kashiwa beat Gaeten Swartenvrouckx (9-11, 15-17, 11-9, 11-7, 9-11, 11-9, 11-7); similarly, no global status, China’s Liu Yu emerged successful by the very narrowest of margins against Laurens Devos (7-11, 13-11, 8-11, 6-11, 11-6, 11-6, 11-9).

Unexpected qualifiers; likewise both Japan’s Aoto Asazu, listed at no.964 on the current Men’s World Rankings and the Czech Republic’s Jiri Martinko, named at no.714, defied the odds. Aoto Asazu booked his place courtesy of success against Italy’s Jordy Piccolin (14-12, 15-13, 13-11, 5-11, 11-4); Jiri Martinko accounted for Chinese Taipei’s Feng Yi-Hsin (6-11, 11-4, 8-11, 11-7, 11-7, 11-6).

Similarly, listed beyond the top 250 names on the Men’s World Rankings, Hong Kong’s Su Zhi, Russia’s Lev Katsman and Vildan Gadiev alongside Germany’s Gerritt Engemann all reserved places in the competition proper contrary to expectations.

Play in the main draw of the Men’s Singles event commences on Thursday 25th October.

Challenge Series An Jaehyun Pavel Platonov Mohamed El-Beiali SAmalraj Anthony

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Day 3 - 2018 ITTF Challenge Belgium Open

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