Goodbye to Favourites

Italian Open update

ITTF Press Release:

Courmayeur, Italy, 4 May 2002. The two top seeded Chinese Taipei players in men’s singles are both out. CHIANG Peng-Lung (TPE) was ousted by his compatriot and doubles partner CHANG Yen-Shu – and CHUAN Chi Yuan lost a very close match to LEUNG Chu Yan (HKG). The new favourite? Now anything can happen.

Toshio TASAKI (JPN) was delayed for his quarter finals match in men’s singles against Swede Peter KARLSSON. He got a yellow card for the delay but there was a punishment even worse – he lost the 1st game 11-2 because he was stressed and not at all ready when the match started.

TASAKI also lost the next game and 0-2 was to tough for him against a player like KARLSSON. The Japanese did recover a bit but KARLSSON took the match 4-2.

Zoran PRIMORAC (CRO) stopped the biggest surprise of the tournament, Magnus MANSSON (SWE). The Croatian won 4-2, but MANSSON has proved that he can reach much more than his current position as nr. 142 on the World Ranking.

Tops Seeds Out

Courmayeur, Italy, 4 May 2002. The two top seeds are out of the women’s singles at the Italian Open. After RYU Ji Hye (KOR) lost earlier on Saturday, BOROS was ousted by the talented Singapore player LI Jia Wei.

Things simply did not work for BOROS and LI Jia Wei was controlling the Croatian with good blocking. LI won 4-2 – in the semi-finals she will find LIN Ling (HKG) at the other end of the table.

In the semi-finals only one European is left. Mihaela STEFF (ROM) overcame the strong defender KIM Bok Rae (KOR): The match was close, but STEFF was leading all the way.

STEFF now faces LAU Sui Fei (HKG) who was the one to send home 2nd seed RYU. In the quarter finals LAU beat An KONISHI (JPN) 4-3.

Chuan was too Fast

Courmayeur, Italy, 4 May 2002. So close and so far away. The former World Champion Jean-Philippe GATIEN played a close match with 2nd seed CHUAN Chi-Yuan (TPE) – but he lost 4-0.

GATIEN had his chances especially in the 1st and 3rd game but the young CHUAN has not only improved a lot he has also gained valuable experience from playing each and every Pro Tour during 2001.

“The problem is that I build my game on speed, but the faster you play against CHUAN the faster he returns”, says Jean-Philippe GATIEN acknowledging that CHUAN now belongs to the world top.

“What concerns my own game I am still not at my best, but I enjoyed being back on the Pro Tour”.

The biggest surprise of the round of the last 16 was Swede Magnus MANSSON (nr. 142 on the World Ranking) beating Damien ELOI (FRA) who is nr. 27 in the World.

The match went all the way to the 7th game. MANSSON went to 10-5 but lost the next two points. Then he took a time out and coming back to the table he stayed cool and took the last point.

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