Tournaments

26 Jun 2019

An electric atmosphere in Minsk at the 2019 2nd European Games, three places at stake for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games in each of the men’s and women’s singles events; on the morning of Tuesday 25th June at the 2019 ITTF Pan American Junior Championships in the Mexican resort of Cancun, the atmosphere was just as electric.

Three was also the number, the number of places available for the continent in the boys’ team event at the 2019 World Junior Championships to be staged in Thailand’s capital city of Bangkok in late November were at stake; finish in first and second positions in each of the four groups and hopes remain alive, anything else and aspirations disappeared into the blue waters of the Caribbean.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

The previous day, the outfits to the progress in the girls’ team event had been decided, a competition where also three places in the forthcoming World Junior Championships are on offer. Three groups, first positions had been secured by the United States, Canada and Brazil; second positions by Chile, Ecuador and Mexico.

Also, top spots in the boys’ team competition had been realised, the respective top four seeds, the United States, Chile, Brazil and Argentina had all completed their initial stage itineraries without defeat and had quarter-final places booked. On the second morning of play, the question posed was as the who would join the four elite outfits; the answer came in the guise Canada, Peru, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico.

Peru represented by Carlos Fernandez, Adolpho Cucho and Jhon Loli recorded a 3-0 win against the Belize trio formed by Devesh Hukmani, Rohit Pagarani and Taye Parkinson; for Canada, Costa Rica and Puerto Rico life was somewhat more testing, the player to attract the attention being Angel Naranjo.

Adolfo Cucho pivotal to Peruvian progress (Photo: Carlos A. Duarte)

 

Impressively, the 15 year old, supported by Gabriel Perez and Jabdiel Torres, proved the backbone of Puerto Rico’s 3-1 win against Guatemala’s Sergio Carrillo, Kevin Ruano and Leonel Barrios. He beat both Sergio Carrillo (11-9, 13-11, 11-7) and Kevin Ruano (11-7, 11-5, 11-5).

“In the first match I felt uncomfortable, I couldn’t find a rhythm to my play; it’s the first time I’d played Sergio. The main thing was to be positive, be strong on the first attack and from the backhand create angles; in the second match I felt much more comfortable, I’d played Kevin last year and won so I felt confident.” Angel Naranjo

Similarly for Costa Rica represented by Alfredo Sanchez, Daniel Araya and Bryan Solis, it was a 3-1 margin of victory against Trinidad and Tobago’s Derron Douglas, Javier King and N’Kosi Rouse. The player to cause the victors problems was Derron Douglas; in the opening match of the fixture, he overcame Alfredo Sanchez (11-9, 11-9, 13-11).

Derron Douglas, the one winner for Trinidad and Tobago (Photo: Carlos A. Duarte)

 

Hard earned wins, it was even harder for Canada; the trio comprising Edward Ly, Terence Yeung and Tommy Xu needed the full five matches to overcome Mexico’s Sergio Cano, Dario Arce and Diego Vazquez. The player to cause the Canadians troubles was Dario Arce, he accounted for both Terence Yeung (11-7, 11-9, 11-5) and Edward Ly (7-11, 11-6, 5-11, 11-2, 11-5). Defeat for Terence Yeung but he emerged the hero of the hour, in the vital fifth and deciding contest, he accounted for Sergio Cano (11-5, 6-11, 11-7, 11-6) to seal a North American success.

“I just said to myself forget the defeat in the last match and concentrate on the next. I tried to play aggressively and maintain a high tempo; winning the third game turned the match in my favour.” Terence Yeung

Terence Young, the Canadian hero (Photo: Carlos A. Duarte)

 

At the quarter-final stage of the boys’ team event the United States meets Costa Rica, Peru opposes Argentina; in the opposite half of the draw it is Brazil versus Canada, Puerto Rico in opposition to Chile.

Meanwhile, at the same stage of the girls’ team competition Mexico faces Ecuador, the United States awaits the winners; in the opposite half of the draw Brazil and Chile confront each other, the successful opposing Chile in the penultimate round.

The fixtures will be played later in the day.

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2019 Pan American Junior Championships Angel Naranjo Dario Arce Terence Yeung.
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