27 Jul 2019

Friday 26th July signalled the official start of the Seamaster 2019 ITTF Challenge Plus Pyongyang Open, the eighth stop on this year’s ITTF Challenge Series.

Here are some of the highlight moments from day one:

by Simon Daish

Men’s Singles

………… DPR Korea’s Kim Song II pulled off a remarkable comeback from three games down to defeat the top seed from Thailand, Supanut Wisutmaythangkoon by a staggering 4-3 score-line (5-11, 7-11, 9-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-7, 11-4).

………… Second seed An Ji Song was pushed hard in his opening round match but managed to hold off a brave fight from qualifier U Tae Ryong (11-5, 14-16, 8-11, 6-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-9) while the player seeded third, Scotland’s Gavin Rumgay prevailed against Chae Min U (12-10, 4-11, 11-7, 7-11, 10-12, 11-7, 11-5).

………… However, there were early exits for the no.5 and no.7 seeded players as India’s Mudit Dani and Chinese Taipei’s Feng Yi-Hsin departed to the host nation’s Kim Ok Chan (11-5, 11-9, 11-5, 11-4) and Ri Jong Sik (7-11, 11-6, 11-4, 11-9, 9-11, 11-8).

Women’s Singles

………… Defending champion Kim Song I opened her women’s singles campaign with a commanding 4-0 win at the expense of Jon Kyong Mi (11-7, 11-9, 11-8, 11-4).

………… There was just as convincing a display from another major title contender as second seed Cha Hyo Sim powered past Ju Hyang Hui in straight games (11-5, 11-9, 11-7, 11-6) to set up a quarterfinal meeting with no.6 seed Pyon Song Gyong.

………… China’s sole hopeful in the event, Gu Ruochen experienced defeat at the hands of no.3 seed Kim Nam Hae (11-6, 10-12, 11-9, 7-11, 13-11, 11-6) and there was also an opening round elimination for the only seeded player from outside the host nation as Norway’s Ilka Doval, seeded fourth, lost out to Kim Jinju (11-6, 11-3, 12-10, 11-7).

Ilka Doval falls to opening round defeat in Pyongyang (Photo: courtesy of Seamaster 2019 ITTF Challenge Plus DPR Korea Open)
Men’s Doubles

………… The home crowd celebrated three victories in the men’s doubles quarter-finals, one of which saw An Ji Song and Ro Hyon Song come out on top against Chinese Taipei’s Huang Yan-Cheng and Huang Yu-Jen in a five-game thriller (11-4, 8-11, 9-11, 11-3, 11-8).

Women’s Doubles

………… Over in the women’s doubles draw there were two quarter-final fixtures on the cards, both of which produced victories for DPR Korea over Chinese Taipei opposition: Kim Jin Hyang and Pyon Song Gyong ran out comfortable winners in their meeting with Chien Tung-Chuan and Yu Hsiu-Ting (11-5, 11-4, 8-11, 11-4) while Ko Su Yong and Ryu Il Gyong survived a tricky affair against Cai Fong-En and Chu Yi-Ching (11-6, 9-11, 7-11, 11-2, 13-11).

Under 21 Men’s Singles

………… Competitors representing Chinese Taipei have secured the gold and silver medals in the Under 21 men’s singles event after Feng Yi-Hsin and Huang Yan-Cheng successfully negotiated semifinal bouts against Ham Yu Song (11-8, 13-15, 11-8, 9-11, 11-6) and Jon Hyo Jung (11-2, 11-3, 11-3).

Under 21 Women’s Singles

………… There will be silverware for DPR Korea to celebrate in the Under 21 women’s singles category as Pyon Song Gyong and Cha Su Yong prevailed in their respective penultimate round matches against Pak Su Gyong (11-5, 11-6, 11-4) and Kim Un Song (8-11, 11-8, 11-6, 11-5) to book their spots in the final.

More Information
Challenge Series 2019 Seamaster Pyongyang Open Kim Song I Kim Song II

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Match Highlights

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Day 3 - Seamaster 2019 ITTF Challenge Plus Pyongyang Open