13 Feb 2020

The top 16 names not required to compete in the group stage of proceedings on the opening day of play, Wednesday 12th February, at the 2020 Czech Junior and Cadet Open, very much the players to catch the eye were Chinese Taipei’s Tsai Chi-Chen and Lin Chen-Ying.

Commencing proceedings the lowest ranked in their initial stage groups; both ended the day unbeaten and in first places.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Most notably, Tsai Chi-Chen accounted for Ukraine’s Anastasiya Dymytrenko, the highest rated player on first day junior girls’ singles duty (11-5, 11-6, 11-6); similarly Lin Chien-Ying overcame Ulyana Alkhouskaya of Belarus, the sixth highest but in a much closer contest. She needed the full five games only emerging successful by the very narrowest of margins (6-11, 11-7, 11-9, 5-11, 12-10).

Problems for Anastasiya Dymytrenko and Ulyana Alkhouskaya but not the end of the road; it was to be their only defeats of the day, second place in their respective groups and thus progress to the main draw was their salvation.

Top spot against the odds for Tsai Chi-Chen and Lin Chen-Ying, it was the same for Japan’s Sachi Aoki and Lucie Mobarek of France as it was for Poland’s Julia Tomecka and Ilona Sztwiertnia. Likewise, Spain’s Elvira Fiona Rad, Italy’s Nicole Aria and Veranika Varabyova of Belarus secured first places contrary to expectations, a feat also achieved by Austria’s Anastasiya Radzionava.

First place in the group for Sachi Aoki (Photo: courtesy of Hong Kong Table Tennis Association)


Upsets but other than for Anastasiya Dymytrenko, amongst the leading names, it was first place without defeat for Russia’s Arina Slautina, Japan’s Miwa Harimoto and Romania’s Luciana Mitrofan.

Also exempt

Meanwhile, in the junior boys’ singles event, also the top 16 names were exempt from the group stage. Russia’s Maksim Kaburkin emerged the biggest surprise name to top his group. The lowest rated, he remained unbeaten, the notable win being against Kai Zarehbin of the United States (11-6, 11-2, 11-7), the second highest rated on qualification stage duty.

Defeat for Kai Zarehbin but his only defeat, thus second place in the group and a place in the main draw. However, after losing to Maksim Kaburkin, he came perilously close to defeat in his immediately ensuing contest. He was stretched to the limit by Romania’s Dragos Alexandru Bujor (12-10, 6-11, 10-12, 11-9, 11-9.

Otherwise for the most prominent names the day ended with first place secured; Switzerland’s Elias Hardmeier, Romania’s Andrei Teodor Istrate duly reserved top spots, a scenario that applied also the Belgium’s Louis Laffineur. He took the torturous route, in his opening match he lost to the Czech Republic’s Krystof Prida in five games (11-5, 11-6, 3-11, 5-11, 11-7) but then beat India’s Preyesh Suresh Raj in four games (11-9, 5-11, 11-3, 11-6). In the concluding contest Preyesh Suresh Raj overcame Krystof Prida in four games (5-11, 11-7, 11-5, 11-7).

Tense times for Louis Laffineur (Photo: Rémy Gros)


Thus games ratio decided; Louis Laffineur (5:4) finished ahead of Preyesh Suresh Raj (4:4), third place and no progress to the main draw was the lot of Krystof Prida (4:5).

Eventually first place for Louis Laffineur but lower down the order there were unexpected names who concluded the day at the top of the list. Contrary to expectations Russia’s Vladislav Bannikov and Sergey Ryzhov secured first positions, as did the host nation’s Simon Jadrny and Radim Moravek alongside Austria’s Fabian Fritz. Similarly, defying predictions, Chinese Taipei’s Chang Yu-An and Switzerland’s Mauro Schaarer reserved first positions.

Finalists known

First round names known, in both the junior boys’ doubles and junior girls’ doubles, the finalists are realized.

In the former Italy’s Marco Cappucio and Andrea Puppo meet Poland’s Milosz Redzimski and Lukasz Sokolowski; in the latter the combination of Italy’s Jamila Laurenti and Darya Kisel of Belarus oppose the partnership formed by Ireland’s Sophie Earley and Anna Hursey of Wales.

Sophie Earley through the junior girls’ doubles final in partnership with Anna Hursey (Photo: Rémy Gros)


Play in the junior individual events concludes on Thursday 13th February.

World Junior Circuit 2020 Czech Junior & Cadet Open Anastasiya Dymytrenko Ulyana Alhouskaya Tsai Ch-Chen Lin Chien-Ying

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