Five titles were decided on the opening day of action, Thursday 19th May, at the Al-Watani Para Championship in Amman, Jordan.
In the women’s singles, competing in group organised events, Germany’s Jana Spegel (class 1), Iraq’s Najlah Al-Dayyeni (class 6) and Turkey’s Umran Ertis (class 10), alongside India’s Sonalben Patel (class 3) and Pruthi Barve (class 7-9) all struck gold.
Undoubtedly, the event to attract the attention was class 1, a competition rarely held and not organised at the Paralympic Games when the category combines with class 2.
None of the participants on duty in Amman appear among the seven names on the current world rankings; soon we can look forward to adding those Evanthia Bournia from Greece and Saudi Arabia’s Maryan Almyrisi, the players who finished in second and third positions behind Jana Spegel.
Success for Jana Spegel,for whom like Pruthi Barve, it was a first ever international title, in the one female event not completed on the opening day of action, there was further success for Germany.
Sandra Mikolaschek (class 4) justified her top seeded position, reaching the penultimate round without due alarm.
Similarly, in the men’s singles, the top seeds, enjoyed a trouble free day, the one exception being Egypt’s Mohamed Eid Saleh (class 4); he finished in second position in his group losing to Iraq’s Muntadher Al-Saaaji (11-9, 13-15, 11-8, 11-8).
Mohamed Eid Saleh now meets India’s Jashrant Chaudhary in the quarter-finals; Muntadher Al-Saaaji remained unbeaten to reserve a semi-final place.
Testing times for Mohamed Eid Saleh, for top seeded colleagues, Hassan Tolba (class 5) and Sayed Youssef (class 7), it was a day without blemish.
Not to be overshadowed, Frenchman Alan Papirer (class 1), alongside Germany’s Jan Guertler (class 2-3) and Benedikt Müller (class 6) ended the day without defeat as did Malaysia’s Chee Chao Ming (class 8-9) and Iraq’s Abdulrahman Shafeeq (class 10).
The men’s singles and women’s singles events conclude on Friday 20th May.