Gold medallist at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games, on Saturday 14th May, Ukraine’s Maryna Lytovchenko emerged the most successful player on duty at the ITTF Slovenia Para Open 2022 in Lasko.
The 30-year-old from Kyiv completed a clean sweep and in doing so became the first player to secure all three available titles at the same tournament, since the doubles events where introduced at the start of the year.
Currently, she stands alone.
On a hectic final day, competing in women’s singles class 6, she recorded a semi-final win against Romania’s Camelia Ciripan (12-10, 11-5, 11-5), before later in the morning securing the title at the expense of Germany’s Stephanie Grebe (11-8, 8-11, 6-11, 11-5, 11-8).
Only a brief respite of just over an hour, she partnered Hungary’s Zsofia Arloy to women’s doubles class 14 success, again Stephanie Grebe having to settle for silver, this time partnering colleague Juliane Wolf (11-7, 11-7, 11-7).
Two titles collected, a short break, later in the afternoon she joined forces with compatriot Viktor Didukh to secure the mixed doubles class 14 top prize. At the final hurdle they beat Jean-Paul Montanus and Kelly van Zon of the Netherlands (11-5, 11-5, 12-14, 11-3).
A busy day in a city for which she has a particular affinity; in 2018 when Lasko was the home for the World Para Table Tennis Championships, she struck gold in women’s singles class 6.
Success for Viktor Didukh and a second title on the day; earlier he had emerged the men’s singles class 8 winner. Impressively, he secured the title by beating Poland’s Piotr Grudzien (11-9, 11-4, 5-11, 12-10), having one round earlier ousted Great Britain’s Aaron McKibbin (11-5, 11-8, 11-3).
Two titles for Viktor Didukh, it was the same for colleague, Ivan Mai. He won men’s singles class 9, before partnering colleague, Lev Kats to gold in men’s doubles class 18.
Also from Ukraine, Natalya Kosmina was not to be left out. After emerging the women’s singles class 11 winner; she joined forces with the Czech Republic’s Denisa Macurova, to clinch women’s doubles class 22 gold.
The ITTF Foundation, the Paralympic Committee of Slovenia and the Slovenian Table Tennis Association joined forces to bring ten Ukrainian players plus their managers and a coach to the ITTF Slovenia Para Open 2022.
Ukrainian players most certainly attracted the attention, so did those from the Korea Republic; especially, Seo Suyeon and Yoon Yiju.
Seo Suyeon won women’s singles class 1-2, partnered Li Migyu to the top prize in women’s doubles class 5, before in harness with Park Jincheol claiming silver in mixed doubles class 4.
Meanwhile, Yoon Jiyu won women’s singles class 3, before joining forces with Kim Junggil to achieve success in mixed doubles class 7.
Worthy performances, it was the same from Thailand’s Wijitra Jaion and Alexandra St Pierre of France; both joined the two titles club.
Wijittra Jaion won women’s singles class 4, then partnered Wanchai Chaiwut to success in mixed doubles class 10. Similarly, Alexandra St Pierre claimed women’s singles class 4 gold, before combining with Germany’s Sandra Mikolaschek to emerge victorious in women’s doubles class 10.
Play concluded in Slovenia, attention now turns to Jordan; the three day Al-Watani Championships commence on Thursday 19th May.
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- ITTF Slovenia Para Open 2022 – Podium Places
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