Iranian pair quite unique
Overall, when we bid farewell to 2020, one of the most difficult and frustrating ever known to mankind, a quarter of a century of opening international tournaments on the ITTF World Tour, prior to 2012 known as the ITTF Pro Tour, had been completed.
Also, four years of independent Challenge Series events had been staged; taking both initiatives into consideration, Iran’s Nima Alamian and Noshad Alamiyan held a very special place when the curtain closed on the old year. In fact, they stood alone.
On the ITTF World Tour, over the 25 year period, a total of 324 men’s doubles events had been staged; 160 pairs had claimed titles, with various partners 176 players had struck gold.
Understandably at the Challenge Series tournaments held over the four year period, in men’s doubles events the number of events was somewhat less. In total 37 tournaments had been staged, title winning partnerships amounted to 35 in number with 68 players mounting the top step of the podium.
In 2015, on the ITTF World Tour, at the Belgium Open in De Haan, Nima and Noshad Alamiyan beat Hungary’s Nandor Ecseki and Adam Szudi to claim the men’s doubles title. More recently, just under one year ago in early February they emerged successful at the 2020 ITTF Challenge Series Spanish Open in Granada. At the final hurdle they accounted for Korea Republic’s Baek Kwangil and Park Chan-Hyeok.
The wins mean that they are one of only four pairs to secure men’s doubles titles on both the ITTF World Tour and at ITTF Challenge Series events, the other such successful partnerships being Brazil’s Hugo Calderano and Gustavo Tsuboi, China’s Cao Wei and Xu Yingbin alongside Korea Republic’s Jeoung Youngsik and Lee Sangsu.
Such an achievement puts the Iranian duo in salubrious category, but one other factor sets them alone; they are the only brothers to win a men’s doubles title on the ITTF World Tour or at an ITTF Challenge Series tournament.
Moreover, they are the only siblings, no women’s doubles partnership, nor mixed doubles combination has ever achieved the feat.
Also, add one more fact to the scenario; Nima is right handed, Noshad is left handed. So, the question posed is when was the most recent occasion when siblings, one left handed, the other right handed won a major international title?
On Wednesday 14th April 1954, on their 21st birthday England’s twin sisters Diane and Rosalind Rowe, the former left handed, the latter right handed, won the women’s doubles titles at the World Championships in London.
A very special place for Nima Alamian and Noshad Alamiyan. Do we have to go back some 67 years to find left and right handed siblings who could win on the international stage?
Editor: Ian Marshall