17 Mar 2021

An exacting journey, on the afternoon of Wednesday 17th March that journey came to an end; most significantly for Thailand’s Suthasini Sawettabut, a positive end.

The 26 year old emerged successful in the women’s event at the 2020 World Singles Olympic Games Qualification Tournament in Doha; a precious place in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games was duly reserved.

by Ian Marshall

In the crucial deciding contest, the no.3 seed, Suthasini Sawettabut beat Spain’s Maria Xiao, the no.13 seed and thus maintained tradition; she won in five games (13-11, 5-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-8).

Notably, they had met on four prior occasions on the international scene, all four meetings being decided in five games in favour of Suthasini Sawettabut!

In 2007 they confronted each other in the junior girls’ singles competition at the Swedish Junior and Cadet Open in Örebro (8-11, 9-11, 11-8, 11-9, 11-5); two years later they met in the women’s singles event at the Singapore 2010 Youth Olympic Games (11-8, 8-11, 11-6, 13-15, 12-10).

The next meeting was at the 2016 ITTF World Tour in Austria, a similar verdict (11-2, 11-5, 11-5, 8-11, 11-5). Meanwhile, more recently, the Thai star prevailed at the 2020 ITTF Challenge Portugal Plus Open (2-11, 13-11, 11-2, 11-7, 11-5).

Success for Suthasini Sawettabut, the culmination of a most professional approach.

In Doha, after accounting for Sweden’s Stina Källberg, the no.40 seed (11-3, 11-9, 11-8, 5-11, 11-9), Suthasini Sawettabut had ended the progress of Luxembourg’s Sarah de Nutte, the no.15 seed (11-8, 11-6, 11-9, 11-9), prior to losing to the defensive attributes of Russia’s Polina Mikhailova, the no.5 seed (11-8, 11-6, 9-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-8).

A setback but only temporary; one day later Suthasini Sawettabut beat Ukraine’s Margaryta Pesotska, the no.2 seed (4-11, 11-9, 11-9, 11-8, 11-9), to set the scene for the meeting with Maria Xiao.

Successfully the meeting was concluded.

Women’s Singles Qualifiers – 2020 World Singles Olympic Games Tournament

Britt Eerland (Netherlands), Linda Bergström (Sweden), Polina Mikhailova (Russia), Yang Xiaoxin (Monaco), Suthasini Sawettabut (Thailand)

General News Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games Maria Xiao Suthasini Sawettabut

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