Candidates for places in the Japanese national team, following the retirement of Jun Mizutani from international duty; on Monday 20th September, Yuto Kizukuri, Yuto Muramatsu and Hiroto Shinozuka all made successful starts to their campaigns in the qualification stage of the men’s singles event at the WTT Star Contender Doha 2021 tournament.
Men’s singles silver medallist at the Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games, Yuto Muramatsu used his defensive skills to good effect to beat Slovenia’s Petr Hribar (12-10, 11-7, 14-12).
Impressive from Yuto Muramatsu, it was the same from Yuto Kizukuri, amongst other achievements, the under 21 men’s singles winner in the ITTF World Tour in 2017 in China and the following year in the Czech Republic.
It was a situation that applied also to Hiroto Shinosuka, semi-finalist in the junior boys’ singles event at the 2019 Asian Junior and Cadet Championships in Yogyakarta.
A succesful start for Hiroto Shinozuka
Yuto Kizukuri accounted for Afghanistan’s Behrooz Daneshmand (11-5, 11-5, 11-3), Hiroto Shinosuka overcame Russia’s Sadi Ismailov (11-8, 8-11, 11-6, 11-9).
Defeat for Behrooz Daneshmand, in the opening round it was the same for his colleagues.
Mustafa Bakhtriyari lost to Singapore’s Beh Kun Ting (11-5, 11-9, 11-2); Mohammad Hosseini was beaten by Chinese Taipei’s Sun Chia-Hung (13-11, 11-9, 11-4).
Success for Sun Chia-Hung, likewise colleague Huang Yan-Cheng duly negotiated the opening preliminary round, as did Singapore’s Beh Kun Ting, Lucas Tan and Josh Shao Han.
However, there was defeat for Hong Kong’s Li Hon Ming; he was beaten by Frenchman Irvin Bertrand (11-5, 11-4, 11-9).
Meanwhile, in the women’s singles qualification opening round, likewise there was success for Singapore.
Zhang Wenling and Zhou Jingyi enjoyed success as did India’s Ruth Tennison and Prithika Pavade, alongside Iran’s Mahshid Ashtari and Melika Karami.
Conversely for Hong Hong’s Lam Yee Lok and Qatar’s Maryam Ali, it was an opening round defeat when confronting European opposition.
Lam Yee Lok was beaten by Slovakia’s Ema Labosova (6-11, 11-6, 11-8, 11-9), Maryam Ali lost to Slovenia’s Katarina Strazar (11-3, 11-4, 11-3).
Play in the qualification stage continues on Tuesday 21st September.
Editor: Ian Marshall