15 Feb 2019

Required to compete in the group stage of proceedings, Japan’s Honami Nakamori emerged the surprise winner of the junior girls’ singles event at the 2019 Czech Junior and Cadet Open in Hodonin on Thursday 14th February.

The success meant the 14 year old collected the first ITTF World Junior Circuit title of her career.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

At the final hurdle, in a tense seven games contest, she beat Prithika Pavade of France, the no.8 seed, the opening game reminiscent of bygone days (20-18, 11-7, 11-6, 8-11, 4-11, 6-11, 11-7).

A hard fought final, earlier en route to the title decider, life had been little different. She had beaten Romania’s Tania Plaian, the no.2 seed (11-6, 13-11, 7-11, 6-11, 11-6, 11-2), prior to ousting Isa Cok of France (11-6, 6-11, 11-1, 11-5, 11-4) to reserve her quarter-final place. Testing contests, it was the same in the next two rounds, recording wins in opposition to colleagues to reserve a final place.

Kaho Akae beaten by Honomi Nakamori in the penultimate round (Photo: Jan Brychta)


She beat Sakura Yokoi, likewise a player who had been required to compete in the group stage in seven games (9-11, 5-11, 11-5, 11-9, 10-12, 11-7, 11-7) to secure her place in the penultimate round where she ended the hopes of Kaho Akae, the no.12 seed (11-5, 11-6, 13-11, 8-11, 9-11, 11-7). Notably Kaho Akae had halted the progress of Italy’s Jamila Laurenti in round three, the no.3 seed (9-11, 9-11, 11-3, 11-6, 11-8, 11-8), prior to advancing to the quarter-finals courtesy of success in opposition to Ari Shirayama, also from Japan and required to qualify (10-12, 11-6, 7-11, 12-10, 6-11, 11-8, 11-6).

Meanwhile, in the opposite half of the draw, in the later rounds, Prithika Pavade had beaten Italian qualifier Gaia Monfardini (12-14, 11-5, 9-11, 11-9, 11-7, 11-3), before ousting the host nation’s Zdena Blaskova, the no.6 seed (11-7, 11-6, 11-6, 11-5), a player in form. One round earlier, at the quarter-final stage, Zdena Blaskova had ended the hopes of Poland’s top seeded Anna Wegrzyn (11-8, 7-11, 11-7, 9-11, 11-8, 11-5).

A semi-final finish for Zdena Blaskova (Photo: Jan Brychta)


Good form from Zdena Blaskova on her journey to the later rounds; it had been the same from Gaia Monfardini. She had reserved her last eight place by beating Singapore’s Liu Sijia (5-11, 11-3, 12-10, 5-11, 11-7, 11-7), the second round winner in opposition to Russia’s Ekaterina Zironova, the no.4 seed (11-9, 11-6, 11-9, 8-11, 11-7).

Silver for Prithika Pavade in the junior girls’ singles event, in the junior girls’ doubles it was gold; partnering Camille Lutz, the duo secured the title at the final expense of Japan’s Ami Shirayama and Sakura Yokoi (11-9, 11-3, 11-5).

The junior girls’ singles event completed, attention now turns to the junior girls’ team and cadet girls’ team competitions.

Prithika Pavade (left) and (right) Camille Lutz on their way to the junior girls’ doubles title (Photo: Jan Brychta)
World Junior Circuit 2019 Czech Junior & Cadet Open Honami Nakamori

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