WTT Star Contender: Diaz and Harimoto in Action on Monday - Butterfly Table Tennis
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WTT Star Contender: Diaz and Harimoto in Action on Monday

(by Steve Hopkins)

The qualifiers are over and the Round of 64 was played on Sunday.  The top seeds have byes in the first round, but will see action starting on Monday.  Hugo Calderano, Dan Qiu, Kanak Jha, Lin Yun-Ju, Darko Jorgic, Patrick Franziska, Truls Moregard, and others  all have byes.  In early action, France’s Alexandre Cassin dominated Jon Persson 3-0, Lim Jonghoon slipped by Habesohn 3-2, Gacina topped Gerassimenko 3-2, and Pucar topped Aguirre 3-0.  Both Indian players Sharath Kamal Achanta, and Sathiyan Gnanasekaran both advanced.  All five Chinese players in the opening round won, Xui Fei, Liu Dingshuo, Zhao Zihao, Zhou Qihao, and Yuan Licen all moved to the Round of 32.  Odds are very good that these younger, lesser-known Chinese players will get to test themselves against some of Europe’s best.

In the Women’s event, Qualifier Miwa Harimoto continued her impressive run with a win over Egypt’s Dina Meshref.  Meshref is World No. 38, a solid win for Japan’s 13 year old future star.    Germany’s Ying Han (World No. 17) is next up for Harimoto.  Lily Zhang fell in her opening match to Ukraine’s Tetyana Bilenko 3-1.  Canada’s Mo Zhang didn’t fare well either – falling to Korea’s Kim Hayeong 0-3.   The top seeds, Doo Hoi Kem and Adriana Diaz will be in action for the first time on Monday.

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