by Simon Daish
On a tense evening in the German capital Georgina Pota set the pace for the hosts, claiming a valuable match opening win against Natalia Partyka (12-10, 9-11, 11-7, 5-11, 11-4). Nina Mittelham doubled the advantage, beating Iveta Vacenovska in a narrow contest (3-11, 13-11, 11-6, 10-12, 11-8) before Shan Xiaona’s fine outing against Guo Ruichen (9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 11-9) brought the tie to a fantastic close for the hosts.
Over in the Austrian city of Linz local fans were also celebrating as Linz AG Froschberg guaranteed it’s spot in the last four thanks to a 3-2 win at Metz TT’s expense. Sofia Polcanova put the home team ahead with a comfortable display against Carole Grundisch (11-2, 11-5, 11-6) only for Ding Yaping to draw the scores level again following her victory over Soo Wai Yam Minnie (11-9, 11-9, 6-11, 11-2).
Again, the pattern was repeated: Linda Bergström handed Linz the advantage, beating Pauline Chasselin (6-11, 13-11, 11-8, 5-11, 11-3) before Ding Yaping secured her second success of the match against Sofia Polcanova (11-4, 9-11, 13-15, 11-5, 11-4) to force a decider. Soo Wai Yam Minnie saw off Carole Grundisch at the last (11-5, 11-6, 11-8), sending Linz through to the penultimate round in the process.
The final semi-final spot up for grabs went to KTS Enea Siarka Tarnobrzeg after the Polish outfit completed the double over Sporting Clube de Portugal.
Suffering an early setback through Han Ying’s narrow defeat to Li Fen (7-11, 11-9, 11-7, 8-11, 11-3), the home side soon levelled the playing field with Gu Rouchen proving too strong for Daniela Monteiro Dodean (11-9, 11-4, 11-5). Back-to-back successes for Li Qian and Kinga Stefanska against Zhenqi Barthel Apolonia (11-1, 11-6, 11-3) and Monteiro Dodean (13-11, 7-11, 5-11, 11-8, 14-12) handed Tarnobrzeg it’s second successive 3-1 victory over the Portuguese club.
At the semi-finals stage of the competition TTC Berlin Eastside take on reigning champions Dr. Casl in a fascinating encounter while Linz AG Froschberg and KTS Enea Siarka Tarnobrzeg will meet in the opposite half of the draw.