// Expected and unexpected, England and Chinese Taipei centre stage - International Table Tennis Federation


26 Oct 2019

Quarter-finalist the previous day in the cadet boys’ team event at the 2019 Bahrain Junior and Cadet Open in Muscat, on Saturday 26th October, England’s Naphong Boonyaprapa alongside Chinese Taipei’s Cheng Pu-Syuan and Liang Yuan-Ting were very much the players to attract the attention.

All fulfilled expectations, all exceeded expectations.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

In the junior boys’ singles event, Naphong Boonyaprapa caused the biggest upset of the day; after accounting for Jordan’s Hamdi Kaswal (11-7, 11-4, 11-4), he beat Saudi Arabia’s Salem Alsuwailem, the no.7 seed (8-11, 11-7, 11-9, 11-6) to end the day unbeaten.

One more match remains in the group, Naphong Boonyaprapa faces Sri Lanka’s Vihandu Wathudurage, a player yet to register a win to his name.

Success contrary to expectations, in the cadet boys’ singles event, life was as anticipated; the no.11 seed, the 14 year old Englishman overcame Oman’s Turki Al-Abri (11-2, 11-4, 11-1), Sweden’s Ludwig Ebenius (8-11, 7-11, 11-9, 11-8, 11-3) and Sri Lanka’s Kakeru Hennayake (10-12, 11-3, 11-9, 11-4) to secure first place.

Justified status

Similarly, in the junior girls’ singles event Cheng Pu-Syuan and Liang Yuan-Ting upset the seeding; concurrently in the cadet girls’ singles they justified their status.

Most impressively in the junior girls’ singles, Liang Yuan-Ting beat Sri Lanka’s Maneesha Gusthighgha (11-8, 8-11, 11-5, 11-7), prior to overcoming India’s Anusha Kutumbale, the no.4 seed (11-7, 9-11, 12-10, 12-10). Similarly, Cheng Pu-Syuan accounted for Malamatenia Papadimitriou, the no.6 seed (11-4, 11-5, 11-6), having in her opening contest prevailed against Munmun Kundu, like Anusha Kutumbale from India (11-9, 11-6, 13-11).

Each has one group match to complete, Liang Yuan-Ting faces Jordan’s Rinad El-Hasani, Cheng Pu-Syuan confronts Sri Lanka’s Fathima Hassim; both adversaries very much present to gain international experience and yet to register a win.

Authority asserted

Imposing in the junior girls’ singles event, it was the same in the cadet girls’ singles competition. Cheng Pu-Syuan, the top seed, accounted for both India’s Sayhvika Venkatachalapathi Srinivasan (11-2, 11-4, 11-2) and Lebanon’s Mariam El-Habech (11-6, 11-5, 10-12, 11-3) to reserve group first place.

Similarly, Liang Yuan-Ting, the no.4 seed, was in no mood for charity. She beat Singapore’s Chloe Lai Neng Huen (11-5, 11-8, 11-4) and Jordan’s Dana Alkhateeb (11-3, 11-1, 11-6); one more match remains, she faces India’s Nehal Vengadasamay in what could prove a testing contest. Nehal Vengadasamay emulated the efforts of Liang Yuan-Ting; she beat Dana Alkhateeb (11-5, 11-4, 11-3), followed by similar success in opposition to Chloe Lai Neng Huen (11-1, 11-8, 8-11, 11-8).

Notable effort

Eye catching performances; there were two more of note both in the same group. Essa Alblooshi from the United Arab Emirates experienced a somewhat surprise five games defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka’s Thisas Ranchagoda (8-11, 12-10, 11-9, 9-11, 11-7) but then in his next match excelled all expectations.

He beat Frenchman, Thibault Bailliet, the no.8 seed (5-11, 12-10, 11-8, 11-9); Thibault Baillet now meets Thisas Ranchagoda in the contest that in reality will determine the top two positions in the group and thus main draw places.

Top names enjoy success

Surprises but not amongst the very top names; in the junior boys’ singles event Iran’s Amin Ahmadian and Chinese Taipei’s Tai Ming-Wei ended the day unbeaten. Similarly, in the junior girls’ singles competition there was success for India’s Swastika Ghosh and Cai Fong-En, also from Chinese Taipei.

Likewise, in the cadet boys’ singles event, Chinese Taipei’s Chang Yu-An and Sweden’s Alve Sjoevold reserved group first places, as in the cadet girls’ singles event, in addition to Chen Pu-Syuan, did India’s Suhana Saini.

Hopes events

Meanwhile, in the hopes category, the leading name on duty in the boys’ event, Singapore’s Nicholas Tan enjoyed a trouble free day but for his counterpart in the hopes girls’ singles competition there was defeat. Sweden’s Hillevi Della Morte suffered at the hands of Chinese Taipei’s Liu Zi-Fei; she duly ended the day unbeaten.

Play continues on Sunday 27th October when those in contention for podium places will be known.

World Junior Circuit 2019 Oman Junior & Cadet Open Cheng Pu-Syuan Naphong Boonyaprapa Liang Yuan-Ting

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Day 5 - 2019 ITTF Oman J&C Open