by Ian Marshall, Editor
Winner last year on home soil in China, as well as in Hong Kong and Poland, Shi Xunyao lines up alongside Yuan Yuan and Zang Xiaotong, the outfit occupying the top seeded position. Notably last year Yuan Yuan reached the third round of the women’s singles event at the 2018 ITTF Challenge SET Thailand Open; earlier this year Zang Xiaotong was the junior girls’ singles runner up at the Belgium Junior and Cadet Open.
Next in line in the junior girls’ team event is Hong Kong represented by Chau Wing Sze, Lee Ka Yee and Wong Chin Yau; all have proved most worthy competitors on the international scene but have yet to really shine.
However, that is not the scenario for Prithika Pavade, only 14 years old, last month she won the junior girls’ singles title on home soil in Metz; she leads the French challenge for honours. She is supported by Isa Cok and Camille Lutz. Somewhat, similarly, Romania’s Tania Plaian, the junior girls’ singles runner up last year on the ITTF World Junior Circuit in Serbia and also at the European Youth Championships, heads the fourth seeded outfit. She joins forces with the United States combination of Hsieh Tia Lynn and Rachel Sung.
Notably, Lee Ka Yee, Prithika Pavade and Tania Plaian feature prominently in the junior girls’ singles listing. Prithika Pavade is the no.2 seed, behind Shi Xunyao, one place ahead of Italy’s Jamila Laurenti. Lee Ka Ye occupies the no.4 seeded spot with Tania Plaian being the next in line. China’s Chen Yi, Singapore’s Goi Rui Xuan and India’s Swastika Ghosh complete the top eight names.
Chen Yi prominent, she is also very much to the fore in the cadet girls’ team competition, she lines up alongside Kuai Man and Qin Yuxuan; they occupy the top seeded spot ahead of the outfit formed by Croatia’s Hana Arapovic, Hungary’s Dorottya Tolgyes and Anna Hursey of Wales.
Kuai Man and Chen Yi, the players who occupy the top two respective positions on the under 15 girls’ world rankings reserve the top two seeded places in the cadet girls’ singles event; Romania’s Elena Zaharia and Hana Arapovic are the next in the pecking order. Egypt’s Hana Goda is the no.5 seed followed by Prithika Pavade, Singapore’s Zhou Jingyi and Chinese Taipei’s Tsai Yun-En.
Play commences in Bangkok with the junior girls’ team and cadet girls’ team events.