by Ian Marshall, Editor
The players to raise the eyebrows in the junior boys’ singles event were primarily Frenchman Thibault Poret and the Czech Republic’s Ondrej Kveton.
Adjusting quickly to the environment, in his opening match Thibault Poret overcame the host nation’s Filip Delincak, the top seed (5-11, 11-6, 11-5, 11-9), eventually remaining unbeaten to secure first place in the group and a direct entry to the main draw. The end result for Filip Delincak was runners up spot and thus likewise progress to the main draw; alas round one was to be the end of his adventures, he was beaten by Poland’s Lukasz Sokolowski, the no.8 seed (11-4, 6-11, 11-9, 9-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-9).
Similarly, Ondrej Koveton shone. He beat Poland’s Szymon Kolasa, the no.3 seed (3-11, 11-8, 12-10, 6-11, 11-6) in the group phase and, like Thibault Poret, secured a direct entry to round two; for Szymon Kolasa it was the same fate as befell Filip Delincak. In the first round he was beaten by Italy’s Marco Cappuccio, the no.6 seed (12-10, 11-9, 11-4, 16-14).
Further noteworthy names depart
Early exits for two formidable names, it was the same for two more; after securing first places in their respective groups, Kai Zarehbin from the United States, the no.5 seed, alongside the Czech Republic’s Jan Mokrejs, the no.7 seed, both experienced first round defeats. The host nation’s Kamil Pach accounted for Kaii Zarehbin (3-11, 11-8, 6-11, 14-12, 11-8, 11-7), Frenchman Hugo Deschamps ended the hopes of Jan Mokrejs (11-8, 11-3, 5-11, 8-11, 12-10, 12-10).
Surprise outcomes amongst the leading names; not where Slovakia’s Adam Klajber, the no.2 seed, Canada’s Edward Ly, the no.4 seed were concerned. First place in the group, both advanced directly to round two. Success against the Czech Republic’s Filip Vybiral’s defensive style of play (11-9, 11-3, 11-7), set Adam Klajber on the road to success as did the win posted by Edward Ly when facing Italy’s Francesco Palmieri 911-4, 11-6, 12-14, 11-5).
“I didn’t play as well as I imagined. It was the first match in new surroundings of the local Agrokomplex. One has to adapt quickly to the conditions of the tournament hall. Fortunately, I had no troubles against the defensive style of play. I practise at the table tennis training centre in Nitra, where there are defensive players from Ukraine. I often play against defensive players. Anyway I am happy that I managed the opening match. I believe that my performance will improve in next rounds of the tournament.” Adam Klajber.
Group stage departure
Defeat for the top seed in the opening round of the junior boys’ singles event; it was an even earlier departure for Norway’s Martine Toftaker in the junior girls’ singles competition. She finished in third place in her group behind Sofia Ray of France and Slovakia’s Adriana Illasova. Sofia Ray, duly progressed directly to round two; likewise Adriana Illaskova advanced but in a different manner. She was required to compete in the opening round; she accounted for the Czech Republic’s Klara Hrabicova, the no.3 seed (11-7, 5-11, 3-11, 11-9, 11-8, 13-11).
Earlier in the group stage, Klara Hrabicova had finished in second place in her group losing to Russia’s Anastasiia Ivanova (11-5, 11-8, 11-7); the result meant Anastasiia Ivanova duly progressed directly to the second round.
No place amongst the last 16 names for Klara Hrabicova, for the host nation’s Eliska Stullerova, the no.8 seed, it was the same outcome. In a similar vein to Martine Toftaker, she had to settle for third place in the group; she ended the day behind Poland’s Natalia Szymczyk and Italy’s Miriam Carnovale. A direct entry to round two was the reward for both Natalia Szymczyk and Miriam Carnovale.
Round two place secured as per status
Unexpected names in round two but not in the case of England’s Charlotte Bardsley, the no.2 seed, nor with regards to the French pair of Marie Chapet, the no.4 seed and Charlotte Lutz, the no.5 seed. Likewise the Czech Republic’s Jana Vasendova, the no.6 seed and Slovakia’s Zuzanna Pekova, the no.7 seed duly advanced.
However, for Marie Chapet and Zuzana Pekova it was by a difficult route. Both had to settle for second places in their groups; Marie Chapet finished in runners up spot behind Italy’s Nicole Aria; for Zuzana Pekova, it was next in line to the Czech Republic’s Nela Hanakova. Zuzana Pekova, as with Nicole Aria and Nela Hanakova, received direct entries to round two; for Marie Chapet a first round engagement was needed. She duly responded to beat Slovakia’s Jana Terezkova (11-4, 11-4, 11-7, 11-8).
Upsets as the junior boys’ singles and junior girls’ singles advanced to the second round; it was the same in the junior boys’ doubles and junior girls’ doubles events. Moreover, it was further disappointment for Filip Delincak; partnering Adam Klajber, the top seeds, they suffered a quarter-final defeat at the hands of the Czech Republic’s Ondrej Kveton and Adam Stalzer (12-10, 11-8, 11-9).
Success, a semi-final place against the odds for the Czech Republic, there was also the somewhat reverse situation. Matyas Lebeda and Jan Mokreys, the no.4 seeds, experienced a second round defeat at the hands of colleagues, Simon Jadrny and Jakub Slapnicka (15-13, 9-11, 13-11, 11-6), who at the very next hurdle, the quarter-finals, departed at the hands of Poland’s Jakub Jankowski and Lukasz Sokolowski (7-11, 11-5, 11-7, 12-10).
At the semi-final stage Jakub Jankowski and Lukasz Sokolowski meet Ondrej Kveton and Adam Stalzer; in the opposite half of the draw matters advanced as predicted. Poland also in evidence; Szymon Kolasa and Michal Malachowski, the no.2 seeds, meet the combination of Japan’s Seu Goto and Japan’s Kai Zarehbin, the no.3 seeds.
In a similar manner as play progressed to the penultimate round in the junior girls’ doubles competition there were surprises; France not experiencing the best of fortunes. At the quarter-final stage Marie Chapet and Charlotte Lutz, the no.3 seeds lost to Italy’s Caterina Angeli and Chiara Rensi (11-9, 9-11, 11-9, 11-3); Chloe Chomis and Sofia Ray, having beat England’s Charlotte Bardsley and Mille Rogove, the no.4 seeds (11-9, 11-9, 11-9), departed at the hands of the host nation’s Ema Cincurova and Dominicka Wiltschkova (11-5, 4-11, 11-8, 9-11, 11-7).
In the penultimate round, Ema Cincurova and Dominicka Wiltschkova meet top seeds, the combination of the Czech Republic’s Anna Klempererova and Norway’s Martine Toftaker; Caterina Angeli and Chiara Rensi also confront Czech Republic adversaries. They face Klara Hrabicova and Jana Vasendova, the no.2 seeds.
The individual events conclude on Thursday 31st October.