17 May 2019

Follow the action from Zagreb on Thursday 16th May with updates from day one at the Seamaster 2019 ITTF Challenge Croatia Open.

First for Yukiya Uda

Under 21 Men’s Singles: Final

Japan’s Yukiya Uda, the no.2 seed, beat Kanak Jha of the United States, the no.9 seed (6-11, 11-6, 11-9, 11-7) to secure the under 21 men’s singles title.

It is for 17 year old Yukiya Uda the first such title of his career.

Sun Jiayi delights home supporters

Under 21 Women’s Singles: Final

Sun Jiayi delighted the home supporters; required to qualify she climbed one step higher than in 2017 when she had been the runner up in Poland. She won the under 21 women’s singles event beating Japan’s Yumeno Soma, the top seed, in the final (6-11, 11-3, 11-4, 11-8).

“I did not want to predict much before the start of the tournament, I was just planning to go round by round. At the end it turned out super. In the senior tournament I’m in best 16; I won gold medal at under 21 level. I’m happy to play home, I feel good when I have opportunity to play in front of home crowd.” said Sun Jiayi

Sun Jiayi, the under 21 women’s singles champion (Photo: Robert Valai)
Top pairs advance

Men’s Doubles: Round One

Belgium’s Martin Allegro and Florent Lambiet, the top seeds, beat Sweden’s Fabian Akerström and Simon Berglund (11-9, 12-10, 11-9); Brazil’s Eric Jouti and Gustavo Tsuboi, the no.2 seeds, accounted for Slovakia’s Samuel Novota and Lubomir Pistej (11-8, 11-8, 11-13, 12-10).

Similarly, Poland’s Marek Badowski and Patryk Zatowka, the no.3 seeds, caused Sweden more pain by overcoming Simon Ardvisson and Elias Ranefur (12-10, 9-11, 11-6, 11-5); Germany’s Benedikt Duda and Qiu Dang, the no.4 seeds, prevailed by the very narrowest of margins in opposition to the partnership form by Kanak Jha of the United States and Brazil’s Thiago Monteiro (6-11, 12-10, 11-4, 5-11, 13-11). success

Japanese pairs in evidence

Men’s Doubles: Round One

Japan’s Hibiki Tazoe and Kenta Tazoe alongside Shunsuke Togami and Yukiya Uda caused first round men’s doubles upsets.

Hibiki Tazoe and Kenta Tazoe beat Belgium’s Laurens Devos and Robin Devos, the no.5 seeds (11-5, 11-9, 11-9), Shunsuke Togami and Yukiya Uda ended the hopes of the host nation, they accounted for Frane Kojic and Tomislav Pucar, the no.8 seeds (9-11, 6-11, 11-7, 11-1).

Hibiki Tazoe and Kenta Tazoe who beat Belgium’s Laurens Devos and Robin Devos (Photo: Robert Valai)
South American contest

Men’s Doubles: Round One

Argentina’s Gaston Alto and Horacio Cifuentes prevailed in the all South American first round men’s doubles contest.

Furthermore, they upset the order of merit; they beat Paraguay’s Marcelo Aguirre and Alejandro Toranzos, the no.6 seeds (11-7, 11-3, 11-3).

Top seeds enjoy success

Women’s Doubles: Round One

The leading pairs all emerged successful in the opening round of the women’s doubles event.

Japan’s Honoka Hashimoto and Hitomi Sato, the top seeds, beat Thailand’s Orawan Paranang and Jinippa Sawettabut (11-7, 11-6, 12-10), colleagues Satsuki Odo and Saki Shibata, the no.2 seeds, overcame the combination of Norway’s Ilka Doval and Chile’s Daniela Ortega (11-6, 11-7, 11-5).

Success for Hitomi Sato in partnership with Honoka Hashimoto (Photo: Robert Valai)
International combinations in harmony

Women’s Doubles: Round One

Romania’s Adina Diaconu and Wu Yue of the United States, the no.3 seeds, joined forces to beat the French pairing of Marie Migot and Laura Pfeffer (11-9, 11-5, 4-11, 9-11, 11-5). Likewise, Norway’s Ma Wenting in partnership with Romania’s Elizabeta Samara, the no.4 seeds, ended any aspirations harboured by Brazil’s Bruna Takahashi and Jessica Yamada (11-6, 11-4, 11-9).

Most notably, Japan’s Miyuu Kihara and Miyu Nagasaki, the winners four days earlier in Slovenia, made the ideal start; the no.7 seeds, they accounted for Austria’s Karoline Mischek and Amelie Solja (11-9, 11-5, 12-10).

Host nation disappointment

Women’s Doubles: Round One

The no.8 seeds, the host nation’s Mateja Jeger and Sun Jiayi experienced an opening round women’s doubles defeat at the hands of Huang Hsin and Huang Yu-Chiao (9-11, 11-2, 9-11, 12-10, 11-3) on what proved a round of mixed fortunes for Chinese Taipei.

Conversely, Huang Yu-Wen and Li Yu-Jhun, the no.6 seeds, suffered at the hands of Japan’s Haruna Ojio and Yumeno Soma (11-6, 11-7, 11-8).

Disappointment for Mateja Jeger (Photo: Robert Valai)
Croatian guaranteed podium place

Under 21 Women’s Singles: Semi-Final

The host nation’s Sun Jiayi, the no.9 seed, booked her place in the under 21 women’s singles final. In the penultimate round she beat Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz, the no.2 seed (11-5, 7-11, 11-6, 11-6).

In the final to be played later in the day she opposes Japan’s Yumeno Soma, the top seed; in the corresponding semi-final encounter, she overcame colleague and qualifier, Kyoka Idesawa, by the very narrowest of decisions (6-11, 12-10, 13-11, 11-13, 11-9).

Again so near yet so far for Bastien Rembert

Under 21 Men’s Singles: Semi-Final

Runner up in Serbia, the same in Slovenia, now for the third consecutive week it is so near yet so far for Frenchman, Bastien Rembert. The no.11 seed, he was beaten in the penultimate round of the under 21 men’s singles event by Japan’s Yukiya Uda, the no.2 seed (11-7, 6-11, 11-8, 17-15).

In the final to be played later in the day Yukiya Uda faces Kanak Jha of the United States. The no.2 seed, he booked his place in the final courtesy of success in opposition to Ioannis Sgouropoulos of Greece, the no.19 seed (6-11, 11-8, 4-11, 11-9, 11-3).

A semi-final exit for Bastien Rembert (Photo: Robert Valai)
Title contenders progress

Men’s Singles: Round Two

Major contenders for honours safely negotiated the men’s singles second round.

Chinese Taipei’s Chuang Chih-Yuan, the top seed, beat French qualifier, Jules Rolland (11-6, 11-9, 11-5, 10-12, 11-3), Sweden’s Kristian Karlsson, the no.2 seed, overcame colleague and qualifier Elias Ranefur (6-11, 11-7, 11-8, 11-9, 15-13). Likewise, Kanak Jha of the United States, the no.4 seed, ended the adventures of Aliaksandr Khanin from Belarus, the no.20 seed (11-8, 11-4, 11-4, 11-7).

Notable names advance

Men’s Singles: Round Two

Notable names emerged success in round two of the men’s singles event; Slovenia’s Darko Jorgic, Germany’s Benedikt Duda and Japan’s Masataka Morizono all succeeded without the need for a deciding seventh game.

Darko Jorgic, the no.5 seed, beat Indian qualifier, Amalraj Anthony (11-7, 11-9,9-11, 11-9, 11-6), Benedikt Duda, the no.6 seed, overcame Brazil’s Thiago Monteiro, the no.19 seed (9-11. 13-11, 11-6, 9-11, 11-4, 11-6). Likewise, Masataka Morizono, the no.7 seed halted the aspirations of Russian qualifier Mikhail Paikov (11-4, 7-11, 11-6, 5-11, 11-8, 11-6).

Masataka Morizono who beat Mikhail Paikov (Photo: Robert Valai)
Croatian progress

Men’s Singles: Round Two

The host nation’s Wei Shihao and Tomislav Pucar both negotiated the second round of the men’s singles event successfully.

Wei Shihao, a qualifier, upset the seeding by beating Russia’s Alexander Shibaev, the no.10 seed (11-3, 12-10, 9-11, 11-9, 11-4); Tomislav Pucar justified his no.9 seeded place in the draw, he accounted for Japanese qualifier Kenta Tazoe (11-5, 11-9, 11-2, 9-11, 11-13, 14-12).

Takuya Jin maintains form, upsets

Men’s Singles: Round Two

Semi-finalist the previous week in Slovenia, Japan’s Takuya Jin caused the biggest upset in the second round of the men’s singles event. Once again required to qualify, in the second round he beat Brazil’s Gustavo Tsuboi, the no.4 seed (11-6, 11-6, 11-9, 11-8).

Success for one Japanese qualifier against a seed; there was success for another. Shunsuke Togame ended the hopes of Slovenia’s Deni Kozul (11-3, 3-11, 8-11, 11-4, 11-8, 11-5).

Takuya Jin celebrates victory over Gustavo Tsuboi (Photo: Robert Valai)
Sun Jiayi and Shin Yubin both upset seeding

Women’s Singles: Round Two

Flying the flag for Croatia, Sun Jiayi, the no.32 seed, overcame the backspin skills of Ukraine’s Ganna Gaponova, the no.11 seed (8-11, 11-5, 11-4, 17-15, 11-2).

A fine effort from Sun Jiayi, it was the same from Korea Republic’s Shin Yubin; a qualifier and only 14 years old, she ended the hopes of Luxembourg’s Sarah de Nutte, the no.15 seed (15-13, 11-7, 11-3, 11-8).

Another former champion departs

Women’s Singles: Round Two

Defeat for the 2014 champion, Monaco’s Yang Xiaoxin was followed by defeat for the 2017 winner; in a grueling contest against fellow defender Ukraine’s 35 year old Tetyana Bilenko, the no.18 seed, Japan’s 20 years of age Honoka Hashimoto, the no.6 seed, experienced excruciating defeat.

She was beaten by the very narrowest of seven game margins (14-12, 4-11, 12-14, 11-9, 10-12, 11-6, 11-9).

Winner in 2017, for Honoka Hashimoto, in 2019 a second round exit (Photo: Rita Taborda)
Major title contenders progress

Women’s Singles: Round Two

Major title contenders, Japan’s Saki Shibata and Miyuu Kato alongside Romania’s Elizabeta Samara safely negotiated the second round of the women’s singles event.

Saki Shibata, the no.2 seed, beat Viktoria Pavlovich of Belarus, the no.22 seed (11-8, 11-5, 11-7, 11-6), Miyuu Kato, the no.5 seed, accounted for Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yi-Hua (11-6, 11-7, 11-7, 11-9). Likewise Elizabeta Samara, the no.4 seed, ended the hopes of Thai qualifier Orawan Paranang (12-10, 6-11, 11-6, 11-9, 2-11, 11-8).

Su Pei-Ling maintains form

Women’s Singles: Round Two

A first round women’s singles win in opposition to Austria’s Sofia Polcanova, the no.3 seed (11-7, 9-11, 11-9, 5-11, 4-11, 11-8, 11-8); Chinese Taipei’s Su Pei-Ling continued her good form; in round two she beat Sweden’s Linda Bergström, the no.17 seed (11-6, 11-9, 11-8, 12-10).

Upsets, in the top half of the draw, Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz, the no.7 seed, is the highest ranked player as the third round looms; in round two she beat Poland’s Natalia Bajor, the no.31 seed (11-8, 11-7, 5-11, 11-5, 10-12, 11-3).

Su Pei-Ling, her outstanding form continues (Photo: Robert Valai)
Generations apart

Women’s Singles: Round Two

A gap of 40 years, Japan’s 14 year old Miyuu Kihara, the no.19 seed emerged successful in the battle of the generations.

She caused somewhat of an upset, she beat Luxembourg’s 55 year old, Ni Xia Lian, the no.10 seed in 11-5, 11-3, 11-7, 12-10).

End of road for former champion

Women’s Singles: Round Two

The winner in 2014 in Zagreb when beating Misako Wakamiya in the final, in the second round of the women’s singles event, Monaco’s Yang Xiaoxin, the no.20 seed, was beaten Japan’s 16 years old Miyu Nagasaki, the no.8 seed.

Miyu Nagasaki avenged the defeat of her colleague five years earlier in four straight games (11-5, 11-3, 11-7, 12-10).

No 2014 repeat for Yang Xiaoxin (Photo: Ireneusz Kanabrodzki)

Haruna Ojio causes biggest shock to date

Women’s Singles: Round Two

Required to qualify, Haruna Ojio caused the biggest upset of the tournament to date; in the second round of the women’s singles event she beat colleague Hitomi Sato, the top seed (1-11, 11-5, 9-11, 9-11, 11-9, 11-6, 11-4).

Accepted both are colleagues and know each other well but Haruna Ojio is only 13 years old.

More disappointment for India

Under 21 Men’s Singles: Quarter-Finals

Top seed, India’s Manav Vikash Thakkar experienced a quarter-final under 21 men’s singles defeat at the hands of Ioannis Sgouropoulos of Greece, the no.19 seed (11-5, 11-7, 11-8); the Greek he now meets Kanak Jha of the United States, the no.9 seed. He accounted for Poland’s Maciej Kubik, the no.33 seed (8-11, 11-7, 11-6, 10-12, 11-8).

Meanwhile in the lower half of the draw Frenchman Bastien Rembert opposes Japan’s Yukiya Uda; in the round of the last eight, Bastien Rembert, the no.11 seed, accounted for Tian Ye of the United States, the no.30 seed (11-2, 11-9, 11-8), Yukiya Uda, the no.2 seed, ended the progress of Argentina’s Horacio Cifuentes, the no.14 seed (11-6, 11-6, 11-7).

Manav Vikash Thakkar beat by Ioannis Sgouropoulos (Photo: Richard Kalocsai)
Indian star misses out

Under 21 Women’s Singles: Quarter-Finals

Third seed Archana Girish Kamath of India has missed out on a podium spot following a 3-1 defeat to Japan’s Kyoka Idesawa (8-11, 11-8, 11-4, 11-5) to set up an all-Japan meeting with top seed Yumeno Soma, who beat Slovenia’s Aleksandra Vovk (11-7, 11-4, 11-3).

Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz also progressed with a four games victory over Adina Diaconu (11-5, 12-10, 5-11, 11-1) while the host nation’s Sun Jiayi claimed a ‘walkover’ win against Daria Trigolos.

Repeat outcome

Men’s Singles: Round One

Pushed right down to the wire at the Liebherr 2019 World Championships in Budapest and in Zagreb the outcome was the same as Sweden’s Kristian Karlsson narrowly saw off Scotland’s Gavin Rumgay (11-4, 8-11, 3-11, 11-6, 7-11, 11-3, 11-7). Another Swedish victory came courtesy of Elias Ranefur, who proved too strong for Argentina’s Horacio Cifuentes (13-11, 14-12, 11-5, 11-9).

Gavin Rumgay extended Kristian Karlsson the full seven games distance (Photo: Robert Valai)
Early departure for Croatian star

Men’s Singles: Round One

Much to the disappointment of the home fans Andrej Gacina has fallen in round one after the no.16 seed failed to convert a two games lead against Ukraine’s Yevhen Pryshchepa (9-11, 11-13, 11-8, 11-8, 11-6, 11-5).

However, fellow Croatian representative Wei Shihao was able to avoid the same fate, beating Austria’s Andreas Levenko 4-1 (11-5, 4-11, 11-7, 11-5, 11-8).

Top seed off to winning start

Men’s Singles: Round One

Top seed for the men’s singles draw, Chinese Taipei’s Chuang Chih-Yuan successfully negotiated his opening round encounter against Ronit Bhanja by a 4-1 margin (8-11, 14-12, 11-5, 11-6, 11-7). As for USA’s Kanak Jha, seeded two positions lower in third, it was a six games win at Alexandru Cazacu’s expense (11-6, 11-5, 5-11, 11-3, 6-11, 11-9).

Chuang Chih-Yuan opens account with a win (Photo: Robert Valai)
Japanese quartet strike success

Women’s Singles: Round One

Japan’s Saki Shibata, seeded second, is off to a strong start, posting a fine 4-0 win against Austrian opponent Karoline Mischek (11-5, 11-8, 11-5, 11-4).

Miyu Kato and Honoka Hashimoto also registered opening round successes for Japan with victories over Norway’s Ma Wenting (11-7, 11-2, 11-9, 11-4) and Russia’s Maria Malanina (8-11, 11-6, 11-4, 11-5, 11-2) while Satsuki Odo prevailed in her meeting with Germany’s Wan Yuan (8-11, 11-8, 11-5, 11-3, 11-6).

Sofia Polcanova eliminated!

Women’s Singles: Round One

Seeded third for the women’s singles event but Austria’s Sofia Polcanova has been knocked out at the first hurdle in Zagreb following a fine display from Chinese Taipei qualifier Su Pei-Ling (11-7, 9-11, 11-9, 5-11, 4-11, 11-8, 11-8).

Meanwhile, there was a case of sisterly revenge as Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz beat the player responsible for her sister Melanie’s qualification exit, Romania’s Arina Singeorzan across five games (11-5, 11-8, 11-5, 5-11, 11-6).

First round exit for Sofia Polcanova (Photo: Robert Valai)
Crushing start for home players

Women’s Singles: Round One

In the opening session of the day the host nation tasted defeat on two fronts: named as the no.21 seeded player but Mateja Jeger lost out to Brazilian qualifier Caroline Kumahara (11-7, 7-11, 11-5, 11-7, 11-4) while Klara Cakol’s superb recovery effort was halted by no.25 seed Nadezhda Bogdanova (11-5, 11-2, 11-8, 8-11, 7-11, 7-11, 12-10).

Main event commences

The opening day of main draw action at the Seamaster 2019 ITTF Challenge Croatia Open is here – take a detailed look at the day’s schedule below:

Challenge Series 2019 Croatia Open Zagreb

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