14 Apr 2019

The depth of talent seemingly ever deeper, Japan won the junior girls’ team event at the 2019 French Junior and Cadet Open in Metz on Saturday 13th April.

Furthermore, they succeeded in style; they were never seriously troubled at any stage of the proceedings.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Safely through the group stage of play without conceding a single individual match; in the main draw, it was exactly the same. The trio formed by Kaho Akae, Haruna Ojio and Sakura Yokoi displayed not one morsel of charity en route to gold.

At the semi-final stage they accounted for the German trio formed by Franziska Schreiner, Laura Tiefenbrunner and Yuki Tsutsui, before in the final recording the same margin of victory when opposing the combination formed by Crystal Wang and Amy Wang of the United States who lined up alongside Romania’s Irina Rus.

In a hard fought full distance five games contest, Kaho Akae gave her team the ideal start by beating Crystal Wang (11-7, 7-11, 9-11, 12-10, 11-8) to relieve any nerves. Haruna Ojio followed suit by overcoming Amy Wang (11-4, 11-5, 11-3), before Sakura Yokoi accounted for Irina Rus (11-2, 11-2, 11-3) to bring matters to a conclusion.

Notably for Haruna Ojio, the win had a special sense of satisfaction, the previous day she had experienced defeat at the hands of Italy’s Jamila Laurenti in their junior girls’ singles quarter-final clash (11-4, 5-11, 11-6, 13-11, 11-9).

“I’m very tired but so happy because I lost in the singles event, so it’s a good thing to win now. I was relaxed all through the event.” Haruna Ojio

Impressive from the Japanese threesome, in the opposite half of the draw, in the penultimate round, it had been the same from Amy Wang, Crystal Wang and Irina Rus; they had reserved their place in the final courtesy of a 3-0 win opposition to the host nation’s Isa Cok, Camille Lutz and Hanitra Raharimanana.

Proceedings conclude on Sunday 14th April when the individual titles in the cadet age group competitions will be decided.

World Junior Circuit 2019 French Junior & Cadet Open Haruna Ojio Kaho Akae Sakura Yokoi

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