SET THAILAND JUNIOR & CADET OPEN
Sunday 19th May
Three titles for Kuai Man, the leading name in Bangkok
A series of most impressive performances, Kuai Man emerged the most successful player at the SET Thailand Junior and Cadet Open; play concluding in Bangkok on Sunday 19th May after five days of action.
On the second day of proceedings, she had joined forces with Chen Yi and Qin Yuxuan to claim gold in the cadet girls’ team event; a 3-0 success in the final against Chinese Taipei’s Liu Ru-Yun, Chen Tsai-Ni and Wang Hsia-Hsin being the margin of victory. On the concluding day she secured both the cadet girls’ singles and junior girls’ singles titles.
The top seed in the cadet girls’ singles event, she beat colleague, Chen Yi in the final (3-11, 11-8, 11-9, 7-11, 11-9); the win coming prior to securing the junior girls’ singles title to conclude a most successful visit to the Thai capital. Required to qualify, in the title deciding contest, she caused somewhat of an upset, she accounted for compatriot, Shi Xunyao, the top seed (4-11, 9-11, 13-11, 12-10, 11-8, 11-8).
Defeat for Shi Xunyao, one step lower than in the junior girls’ team event when she had struck gold alongside Yuan Yuan and Zi Xiaotong; the trio recording a 3-0 win in the final against Japan’s Noa Fukuoka, Misa Inayoshi and Reina Aso.
Success for China as anticipated but in the junior boys’ singles and cadet boys’ singles events life was somewhat different.
On the second day of action, represented by Kuang Li, Liu Yebo and Xie Congfan; China had recorded a 3-0 margin of victory in the final of the junior boys’ team event when facing Singapore’s Beh Kun Ting, Josh Chua Shao Han and Pang Yew En Koen. In the corresponding cadet boys’ team final, it had been very much the same; a 3-1 success had been the order of the day in opposition to Hong Kong’s Baldwin Chan Ho Wah, Yiu Kwan To and Yu Nok.
Three days later for China, the colour of the medal in the respective junior boys’ singles and cadet boys’ singles events was silver. In the former, the host nation’s Yanapong Panagitgun, the no.6 seed, beat Liu Yebo, the no.3 seed (11-8, 11-9, 8-11, 10-12, 8-11, 11-7, 11-8) at the final hurdle; in the latter Belgium’s Louis Laffineur, also the no.6 seed, accounted for Chen Yuanyu, the no.2 seed (12-10, 6-11, 11-9, 11-9) to reserve the top step of the podium.
Titles on the concluding day for Belgium, China and Chinese Taipei; there was also success for Singapore and Egypt. In the hopes boys’ singles event, Nicolas Tan flew the flag for Singapore; he beat colleague Ellsworth Le (9-11, 11-8, 12-10, 8-11, 11-7) to secure the title. Meanwhile, in hopes girls’ singles final, Hana Goda upheld Egyptian honour; she secured the top prize at the expense of Hong Kong’s Sammi Law Sum Yee.
Now a two day break, in Bangkok the next event on the calendar is the Seamaster 2019 ITTF Challenge Thailand Open, on the ITTF World Junior Circuit, the Polish Junior and Cadet Open; both tournaments start on Wednesday 22nd May.
By Ian Marshall, Editor
Photo Credit: ITTF/Panichar Junkana