2019 Asian Junior & Cadet Championships
Ulaanbaatar, Tuesday 2nd September
DPR Korea upset seeding to top group
Earlier in the year in July at the 2019 ITTF Challenge Plus Pyongyang Open, the host nation’s Pyon Song Gyong had impressed; she won the under 21 women’s singles title, before finishing in runners up spot in the women’s singles event.
On the opening day of play, Monday 2nd September, at the 2019 Asian Junior and Cadet Championships in Ulaanbaatar, the 18 year old impressed once again, she led DPR Korea to first place in their initial phase junior girls’ team group, a position contrary to status.
DPR Korea commenced play as the no.9 seeds; in their opening contest they caused statistically the biggest upset of the day, they recorded a 3-0 margin of victory in opposition to Hong Kong, the no.3 seeds.
Pyon Song Gyong set the standard. She beat Lee Ka Yee (11-9, 11-1, 11-3), before Kim Kum Yung accounted for Chau Wing Sze (11-5, 11-8, 11-5) and Kim Un Song concluded the fixture by beating Ng Wing Lam (11-6, 11-6, 6-11, 11-6). A most imposing win against Hong Kong, it was the same in their concluding group stage engagement in opposition to Singapore’s Wong Xin Ru, Goi Rui Xuan and Pearlyn Koh Kai Xin.
Problems for Hong Kong but not the end of the road; sandwiched in between, with no changes to the selections, a 3-1 win was secured against Singapore; thus a place in the quarter-finals was reserved. In the concluding group phase fixture, DPR Korea recorded a 3-0 success in opposition to Singapore.
Otherwise, for the leading teams on first day duty, it was top spot in the group.
In the junior girls’ team event, Korea Republic, the no.4 seeds, selecting from Shin Yubin, Choi Haeeun, Lee Daeun and Ryu Hanna headed their group, as did the no.5 seeds, Chinese Taipei’s Chien Tung-Chuan, Yu Hsiu-Ting, Cai Fong-En and Tsai Yu-Chin.
Similarly, in the counterpart junior boys’ team competition where there were also three groups in the first phase, it was top group spots for the leading outfits.
Selecting from Yukiya Uda, Shunsuke Togami, Kakeru Sone and Hiroto Shinozuka, Japan secured first place in their group, as did Iran’s Mohammad Mousavi Taher, Mahdi Madankan, Aliakbar Shoaritehrani and Amin Ahmadian. Likewise, it was the same outcome for Korea Republic, the quartet comprising Jung Seongwon, Kim Woojin, Park Gyuhyeon and Lee Gihun.
Meanwhile, in both the cadet boys’ team and cadet girls’ team events, the leading outfits ended the day unbeaten and in pole position. In the boys’ team competition, China, with Xu Hongrui, Huang Youzheng and Chen Yuanyu on duty, topped their group, as did Japan’s Hayate Suzuki, Rikuto Maede and Sora Matsushima.
It was a similar vein for the girls, China’s Chen Yi and Xu Yi secured first place; a situation that also applied to the Korea Republic formation of Kim Naeyong, Kim Seongjin and Lee Yeonhui.
The quarter and semi-finals of all team events will be played on Tuesday 3rd September.
Editor: Ian Marshall
Photo Credit: ITTF