by Ian Marshall, Editor
However, the day belonged to Hiromoto Kita. Competing in men’s singles class 7, not listed amongst the leading names, second place in his initial stage group, beaten by colleague Masachika Inoue, the no.3 seed (11-7, 11-5, 11-7), Hiromoto Kita went from strength to strength, before having a degree of good fortune.
At the quarter-final stage he beat Kosuke Hemmi, also from Japan (11-9, 8-11, 11-8, 11-7), prior to ousting Thailand’s Chalermpong Punpoo, the no.2 seed (12-10, 8-11, 11-7, 9-11, 11-6) to reserve his place in the final, where he was due to face Stéphane Messi, the top seed. Unfortunately, the Frenchman was forced to withdraw from proceedings.
A surprise outcome, to a lesser extent Chile’s Luis Bustamente, Costa Rica’s Steven Roman and Anurak Laowong upset the odds; all commenced play the no.2 seeds, in the final all beat the top seeds. Luis Bustamente accounted for Mexico’s Victor Reyes (11-6, 8-11, 11-6, 7-11, 11-7) to claim class 2 gold; in class 8 Steven Roman secured the title at the expense of Canada’s Ian Kent (11-5, 11-8, 8-11, 12-10). Similarly in class 3 Anurak Laowong accounted for colleague Yuttajak Glinbanchuen (11-6, 15-13, 11-9) to emerge the champion.
Success for Anurak Laowong, for his colleagues it was success as anticipated. They commenced play the top seeds. In the class 4 final Wanchai Chaiwut beat Chile’s Cristian Gonzalez (11-9, 11-13, 4-11, 12-10, 11-4), in class 5 Maitree Kongruang overcame Great Britain’s Daniel Bullen in the final (8-11, 12-10, 11-6, 11-8). Not to be upstaged Rungroj Thainiyom prevailed against Chile’s Cristian Dettoni (11-8, 13-11, 11-8) to emerge the class 6 champion.
Silver for Chile, in class 10 it was gold and silver, at the final hurdle Manuel Echaveguren beat colleague Gustavo Castro to reserve the top step of the podium (11-6, 13-11, 11-6). Meanwhile, in class 9 in a group organized event, Japan’s Koyo Iwabuchi emerged the winner ahead of Mexico’s Miguel Vazquez; in the title decider, Koyo Iwabuchi accounted for Miguel Vazquez in straight games 11-3, 11-9, 11-9).
ITTF Para Copa Cristina Hoffmann 2019: Full Results & Draws