27 Oct 2018

Hopes high for the host nation but at the semi-final stage of the Men’s Singles event at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Belgium Open in De Haan on Saturday 27th October, it was defeat for Cédric Nuytinck.

After the Korea Republic’s Park Ganghyeon, had beaten fellow qualifier, Germany’s Qiu Dang, in straight games (11-8, 11-6, 11-6, 12-10); by a similar margin, Cédric Nuytinck, the no.8 seed, experienced defeat at the hands of Japan’s Yukiya Uda (11-8, 11-6, 13-11, 13-11).

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Right handed, pen-hold grip, the previous day Qiu Dang had excelled all expectations; on the concluding day of action he was not able to maintain the momentum.

Park Ganghyeon was in determined mood, he was too fast on the first attack, especially adept at following the service with his lethal forehand top spin. Quickly he found a rhythm and dominated the opening three games; Qiu Dang was out of tune.

Later in the fourth game Qiu Dang adapted but it was too late; a most impressive win was posted.

Problems for Qiu Dang at the start of the contest against Asian speed; it was very much the same for Cédric Nuytinck when facing Yuka Uda. The opening two games were dominated by the 17 year old. In the third Cédric Nuytinck responded; at 9-all it was parity. However, he was never able to gain a lead, at his third attempt, Yukiya Uda converted; he held a commanding three games to nil lead.

Trying to find answers to match the speed of Yukiya Uda, Cédric Nuytinck executed controlled top spin strokes, spin not speed; in the fourth game, matters were level at 5-all. Yukiya Uda won the next point, Cédric Nuytinck called “Time Out”. He secured the next point but at 10-7, Yukiya Uda held three match points. Eventually he succeeded but not without some moments of concern.

Cédric Nuytinck reduced the arrears to 10-9, Yukiya Uda called “Time Out”, Cédric Nuytinck levelled, then saved another game point before eventually Yukiya Uda succeeded.

It is the first time that either Park Ganghyeon or Yukiya Uda has reached the final of either an ITTF World Tour or ITTF Challenge Series Men’s Singles final.

Challenge Series 2018 Belgium Open Yukiya Uda Qiu Dang Cedric Nuytinck Park Ganghyeon

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Day 3 - 2018 ITTF Challenge Belgium Open

Match Highlights