04 Mar 2020

The first step to places in the main draw, the qualification stage of the men's singles and women's singles events is the item on the agenda on Wednesday 4th March at the 2020 ITTF World Tour Platinum Qatar Open

Play commences at 10.00 am local time in Doha.

Doubles king shows individual class

Men’s Singles: Preliminary Round 3

One member of the reigning men’s doubles World Championships winning pair, Spain’s Alvaro Robles has displayed his class in the singles game here in Doha with a stunning win against World no.31 Sathiyan Gnanasekaran (11-9, 6-11, 11-5, 11-9, 11-4).

A place in the main draw for Robles and the same for Portugal’s Marcos Freitas, who successfully negotiated a tricky tie against Germany’s Benedikt Duda by a 4-2 score-line (9-11, 11-6, 11-8, 5-11, 11-9, 11-9).

Japanese contingent end day on high note

Men’s Singles: Preliminary Round 3

All three Japanese players involved in the final session of the day emerged victorious to seal their qualification in Doha.

Yukiya Uda survived a seven-game contest against Slovenia’s Darko Jorgic (11-7, 8-11, 11-8, 5-11, 9-11, 11-8, 11-9) while Masataka Morizono required one game less to beat French opponent Tristan Flore (11-8, 11-7, 6-11, 11-7, 5-11, 11-6). Over on table 8 Takuya Jin also celebrated as he produced the goods in his encounter with Czech Republic’s Tomas Polansky (11-9, 8-11, 11-5, 11-7, 11-7).

Setback for Petrissa Solja

Women’s Singles: Preliminary Round 3

Losing one European powerhouse in Bernadette Szocs a couple of hours ago, now Germany’s Petrissa Solja has experienced the same fate. Meeting Yu Mengyu in the final round of qualification, Solja succumbed to a 4-3 defeat at the hands of the Singapore player (4-11, 11-7, 10-12, 11-9, 8-11, 11-9, 12-10).

Not the result she was hoping for, Petrissa Solja exits (Photo: Hussein Sayed)
Croatians enter the spotlight

Men’s Singles: Preliminary Round 3

Andrej Gacina has just negotiated an absolute thriller of a match in the 7.20pm session to book his place in the main draw. Facing a late comeback challenge from China’s Xiang Peng, the Croatian held on to see off the World Junior champion in a dramatic seven-game affair (11-8, 11-9, 11-7, 7-11, 9-11, 6-11, 11-3).

“He was 7-5 up in the third game and I managed to fight back to win it to lead 3-0. I think he relaxed a little bit and started to play better in the fourth. I thought I kept my level but he changed his tactics a little bit, he changed his serve and I had some problems with it… In the last game I told myself I had to go all in and risk it because if I continued to play the same I would have lost today.” Andrej Gacina

The other Croatian in action Frane Kojic also turned heads over on table 11, needing just four games to stun Slovak defender Wang Yang (11-6, 11-8, 11-6, 11-4).

Bernadette Szocs falls short!

Women’s Singles: Preliminary Round 3

One of the favourites to progress through the qualification stages but Romania’s Bernadette Szocs has missed out on her shot of reaching the main event, failing to capitalise on her two-game advantage against German penholder Shan Xiaona (8-11, 8-11, 11-8, 11-5, 11-8, 13-11).

Bernadette Szocs crashes out of women’s singles race! (Photo: Hussein Sayed)

Semi-finalist at the 2019 Women’s World Cup Lily Zhang also suffered defeat in the 6.30pm session of play with World Junior champion Miyu Nagasaki prevailing 4-1 over the United States hopeful (11-8, 11-6, 7-11, 11-7, 11-5).

Chinese duo display their intent

Mixed Doubles: Preliminary Round 1

China’s Wang Chuqin and Sun Yingsha are through to the main draw of the mixed doubles event in Doha, making a statement of intent with their dominant 3-0 victory over Singapore’s Pang Yew En Koen and Lin Ye (11-5, 11-4, 11-6).

2020 ITTF Challenge Plus Portugal Open champions Emmanuel Lebesson and Yuan Jia Nan also progress following the French pair’s straight games success against Aliaksandr Khanin and Daria Trigolos (11-5, 13-11, 11-2), while Romania’s Odiviu Ionescu and Bernadette Szocs claimed victory on table 1.

Drinkhall and Pitchford stage mighty comeback!

Men’s Doubles: Preliminary Round 1

Wow, wow, wow! What a comeback from England’s Paul Drinkhall and Liam Pitchford here in Doha, who refused to give up the fight at 0-2 down as they staged a most impressive recover to see off Serbian opponents Marko Jevtovic and Zsolt Peto 3-2 (10-12, 7-11, 11-9, 11-8, 11-5).

“Yeah, very difficult in the beginning. We were trying to find answers but it was like everything that we tried they had answers for. We mixed our game up and tried to get back into it and once we got back into it they started to get a little bit frustrated. Because we changed levels, they were wondering what to do and me managed to keep going.” Paul Drinkhall

“Even at 2-0 we stayed positive and I think that’s what you have to do if you want to turn matches around. Once we got back to 2-2 we got a bit of momentum and in the fifth game we got a good start. I think they lost some belief towards the end.” Liam Pitchford

English duo rescue incredible comeback victory (Photo: Hussein Sayed)

Defeat for one Serbian pair but it was victory for another as Aleksandar Karakasevic and Lubomir Pistej came out on top against India’s Harmeet Desai and Sushmit Sriram (9-11, 16-14, 8-11, 11-5, 11-6).

European pair recover

Women’s Doubles: Preliminary Round 1

The sole women’s doubles fixture in the 3.00pm session saw the mixed association combination of Denmark’s Stefanie Christensen and Belgium’s Nathalie Marchetti secure their place in the main event, recovering from 1-2 down to beat India’s Sreeja Akula and Madhurika Patkar in an exciting 3-2 contest (11-8, 7-11, 7-11, 11-6, 11-7).

“I still have to improve a lot”

Men’s Singles: Preliminary Round 2

Darko Jorgic is a man in form and he has added another promising win to his collection, battling past China’s Zhou Qihao across six games (14-12, 7-11, 11-5, 4-11, 11-7, 11-4) but the Slovenian star remains humble amongst all the excitement surrounding him:

“I feel really good, it was not easy to beat my opponent. I prepared well, watched some videos with my coach and started well.  I think I played quite well and I’m looking forward to my next match. I practiced more with better players and that has helped me to improve. I still have to improve a lot. I have a list of what I need to do to improve. It is the Olympic year also, we’ve qualified as a team and we need to keep fighting.” Darko Jorgic

Another strong performance from Darko Jorgic (Photo: Richard Kalocsai)
Experienced Sathiyan beats Togami

Men’s Singles: Preliminary Round 2

Sathiyan Gnanasekaran used his experience to the maximum against Japanese prodigy Shunsuke Togami, as the Indian won 4-1 (11-3, 7-11, 11-9, 11-4, 11-8) in a splendid performance.

On table 2 it was a battle between two experienced athletes with Spain’s Alvaro Robles’ coming out on top against Hungary’s Bence Majoros in a brilliant 4-2 (8-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-3, 11-6, 11-3) win.

Persson and Wang one step away

Men’s Singles: Preliminary Round 2

Jon Persson is now a step away from the main event in Qatar after he won his battle against Serbia’s Zsolt Peto, beating him 4-0 (14-12, 11-5, 11-3, 12-10).

Joining the Swedish international in the third qualifying round will be Slovakian Wang Yang, who surprised spectators with a stunning straight games win over China’s Xu Yingbin (11-4, 11-4, 11-6, 11-8).

Lind finds his form

Men’s Singles: Preliminary Round 2

Anders Lind had a good run of form this morning, as the Dane took care of Brazilian Thiago Monteiro’s challenge in a powerful win in under 33 minutes (12-10, 11-7, 12-10, 11-9).

For Belarussian Vladimir Samsonov, France’s Alexandre Cassin was a tough nut to crack but it was one that the veteran found a way around. In his 4-1 (9-11, 11-7, 11-6, 11-4, 11-3) win, Samsonov registered more points on Cassin’s serve and showcased his calmness to dictate the outcome of the match.

“There are many possible reasons I won after today’s match. Of course after Hungary we tried to find out why we lost and prepared better. Could also be that he didn’t play as well today and I played better. Overall it was still not an easy match” Vladimir Samsonov

Samsonov is in form. (Photo: Hussein Sayed)
Yu is through

Women’s Singles: Preliminary Round 2

Singapore’s Yu Mengyu is now into the final round of qualification, after beating India’s Sreeja Akula in a quick encounter at the Aspire Academy (11-3, 11-6, 11-7, 11-6).

There was good news also for Portuguese fans, with Shao Jieni defeating Belgian Nathalie Marchetti in straight games, using her attack-minded shots to the maximum (11-9, 11-3, 11-9, 12-10).

Pesotska coasts

Women’s Singles: Preliminary Round 2

Margaryta Pesotska had a swift time on table this morning against Uzbekistan’s Rimma Gufranova, as the Ukrain star registered a straight games win (11-2, 11-4, 11-4, 11-7).

Margaryta Pesotska in action in Doha.(Photo: Hussein Sayed)

Meanwhile, Zhang Rui from China displayed her class against tough opposition in Lin Ye from Singapore, as she beat her Asian colleague 4-0 (11-9, 11-3, 11-7, 11-1) in 24 minutes.

“I didn’t expect a 4-0 victory, after all she is one of the top players from Singapore. Having been training in Qatar, of course it is an advantage, getting to know the hall and conditions here” Zhang Rui

Opposite starts for Japanese duo

Women’s Singles: Preliminary Round 2

Haruna Ojio and compatriot Miyuu Kihara had quite contrasting starts this morning in Doha, as only one of them progressed through to the next round.

Ojio lost out to Germany’s Shan Xiaona, who beat her 4-2 (8-11, 11-2, 15-13, 7-11, 11-8, 11-3) while it was quite a speedy performance from Kihara, who accounted for France’s Yuan Jia Nan, winning 4-1 (8-11, 11-3, 11-4, 12-10, 11-7).

Who will make the main stages?
World Tour 2020 Qatar Open

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Day 4 - 2020 ITTF Qatar Open

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