06 Dec 2018

Silver medallist two weeks ago in the Men’s Team event at the Pan American Championships in Santiago; at the other side of the world on Thursday 6th December, Nikhil Kumar of the United States was very much a young man in form.

In the group phase of the Boys’ Singles event at the 2018 World Junior Championships in Bendigo, Australia, the lowest rated player in his group, he ended the day unbeaten.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

After accounting for Argentina’s Martin Bentancor (11-4, 11-9, 11-9, 13-11), a player who earlier in the week had impressed in the Boys’ Team event, he overcame Russia’s Lev Katsman (11-8, 11-3, 5-11, 11-9, 11-5).

Only first place in the group guarantees progress to the main draw; the win means that provided he walks to the table to play Iran’s Navid Shams in his concluding group stage contest, top spot is guaranteed. In his opening matches, Navid Shams, only 13 years old, was beaten by both Lev Katsman (8-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-7, 11-3) and by Martin Bentancor (13-11, 5-11, 8-11, 9-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-7).

Impressive from Nikhil Kumar, it was the same from colleague, Sharon Alguetti; the leading name in his group, he accounted for Finland’s Alex Naumi (11-5, 11-7, 12-10, 6-11, 11-4) and New Zealand’s Alexander Zhou (11-6, 11-6, 11-6, 11-6). He now faces India’s Snehit Suravajjula to determine pole position; likewise Snehit Suravajjula enjoyed a day without defeat.

The door open for place in the main draw for Snehit Suravajjula, it is the same for his compatriot, Manush Utpalbhai Shah; he ended the day unbeaten, having overcome Russia’s Artem Dvoynikov (10-12, 11-7, 11-9, 11-5, 11-9) and Romania’s Dragos Florin Oprea (11-3, 10-12, 11-13, 11-7, 11-7, 11-5). The only unbeaten player in the group Manush Utpalbhai Shah is assured of progress to the main draw.

Success for India as play progressed; it was the same for Germany, both Kay Stumper and Meng Fanbo ended the day without defeat. Kay Stumper beat Argentina’s Alexis Orencel (11-4, 11-4, 11-8, 12-10), followed by success in opposition to Nicholas Tio of the United States (7-11, 11-6, 14-12, 1-11, 11-1, 11-6). Kay Stumper now meets Singapore’s Josh Shao Han to decide first place in the group, Meng Fanbo confronts Iran’s Amirreza Abbasi; likewise both ended the day unbeaten.

Similarly, eyes on a place in the main draw, in a similar manner, Poland’s Samuel Kulczycki and Belgium’s Robin Devos remained unbeaten as did Austria’s Maciej Kolodziejczyk, Malsim Grebnev, Japan’s Kakeru Sone and Canada’s Jeremy Hazin.

World Junior Championships 2018 World Junior Championships Nikhil Kumar

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Day 1 - 2018 World Junior Championships