by Simon Daish
Cuba’s Andy Pereira, no.11 seed, couldn’t build upon his early advantage in his meeting with no.5 seed Gaston Alto, as the Argentine hit back with four consecutive game wins to strike victory (10-12, 11-7, 12-10, 11-4, 11-9). Alto now turns his attention to another player who graced the Olympic stage in 2016 with Mexico’s Marcos Madrid prevailing in his match with Chile’s Gustavo Gomez (11-9, 8-11, 11-5, 11-2, 5-11, 11-6).
Missing out in the qualification play-off round one day prior, Dominican Republic’s Wu Jiaji doesn’t want to miss out on a ticket to Tokyo 2020 for a second time in the same week and will be pleased to have seen off his Round of 16 opponent, Guatemala’s Hector Gatica by a 4-1 score-line (9-11, 14-12, 11-4, 11-1, 11-5). The win sees second seed Wu move through to the last eight where Marcelo Aguirre awaits.
Stunned at the very same hurdle in the first knock-out event in Rosario, Aguirre avoided the same fate this time out with a far more convincing display. Aguirre, seeded seventh, needed just four games to defeat Colombian counterpart Alexander Echavarria in their head-to-head (11-7, 11-9, 11-2, 11-6), resulting in a much-needed confidence boost for the Paraguayan.
However, Aguirre’s fellow countryman Alejandro Toranzos didn’t enjoy his time at the table to the same extent. 12th seed Toranzos was competing against the odds in his Round of 16 encounter against Ecuador’s Alberto Miño and was well beaten by the no.4 seed in the end (11-4, 11-5, 11-8, 11-9).
Success for Miño sees the 30-year-old book a quarter-final showdown with Puerto Rico’s Daniel Gonzalez, who accounted for Jamaica’s Simon Tomlinson in five games (11-4, 11-8, 11-4, 9-11, 11-9). The other quarter-final in the top half of the draw pits top seed Jorge Campos of Cuba against Chilean no.6 seed Juan Lamadrid following their respective victories over Emil Santos (11-6, 11-8, 11-8, 11-7) and Cecilio Correa (11-7, 11-2, 11-5, 11-8).
The men’s singles event concludes on Friday 16th April with two players set to leave Rosario with their tickets to Tokyo.