14 Nov 2018

A place in the main draw booked, Saudi Arabia’s Ali Alkhadrawi and Abdulaziz Bu Shulaybi emerged the surprise partnership in the qualification stage of the Men’s Doubles event at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Belgosstrakh Belarus Open in Minsk on the evening of Wednesday 14th November.

Moreover, they reserved their place by causing the host nation heartache; they ousted Kirill Barabanov and Ilia Barbolin in three straight games (11-9, 12-10, 16-14).

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Impressive from Ali Alkhadrawi and Abdulaziz Bu Shulaybi; it was the same from their colleagues Abdulaziz Al-Abbad and Naif Al-Jadai. They accounted for Austria’s Thomas Grininger and David Serdaroglu (12-10, 6-11, 5-11, 11-9, 11-6) but fell one step short of a place in the main draw. They were beaten by Belgium’s Florian Cnudde and Thibaut Darcis (11-9, 11-8, 11-8).

Defeat for Thomas Grininger and David Serdaroglu was somewhat of a surprise, as what that experienced by Germany’s Tobias Hippler and Nils Hohmeier in the round to decide main draw places; they lost to Japan’s Kakeru Sone and Yuta Tanaka by the narrowest of margins (10-12, 11-7, 11-13, 12-10, 11-9).

Rather differently for the Czech Republic’s Tomas Konecny and David Reitspies, very much favourites to progress, they experienced few problems. They accounted for Israel’s Aviv Ben-Ari and Mathan Simon (11-7, 11-5, 15-13) to secure their place in the competition proper.

Likewise in the Women’s Doubles qualification stage there was a notable surprise and, as in the Men’s Doubles, defeat for the host nation. Just one preliminary round needed, Katsiaryna Baravok and Daria Trigolos experienced defeat at the hands of Ukraine’s Ganna Fardalanska and Ansastasiya Yepifantseva (11-8, 7-11, 11-6, 11-8).

A surprise exit, for the other leading Women’s Doubles pairs on qualification duty it was success.

Italy’s Chiara Colantoni and Giorgia Piccolon beat Slovakia’s Tatiana Kukulkova and Lucia Truksova (11-9, 11-9, 11-0); Germany’s Chantal Mantz and Wan Yuan overcame China’s Gyo Siyu and Zhang Jieling (11-8, 7-11, 11-8, 2-11, 11-6). Likewise, also predicted to reach the main draw, Poland’s Natalia Bajor and Magdalena Sikorska ended the hopes of Kazakhstan’s Gulchekhra Khusseinova and Anastassiya Lavrova (11-6, 11-5, 11-9).

Play in the Men’s Doubles and Women’s Doubles events commences on Friday 16th November.

Challenge Series 2018 Belarus Open Abdulaziz Bu Shulaybi Ali Alkhadrawi

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Day 4 - 2018 ITTF Challenge Belarus Open