Gold and silver for European teams in Sharm El-Sheikh
2015 ITTF World Cadet Challenge
Silver medalists the previous year; team of Europe clinched the gold in the Boys Team Event at the 2015 ITTF World Cadet Challenge in Sharm El-Sheikh, Egypt. For girls it was reverse scenario. Last year's winners, Europe won silver in Girls Team Event.
On their way to the highest step at the medal rostrum, European boys beat Asia 3:0. That was the fourth straight matches win in five encounters they played at the tournament. Cristian PLETEA opened the match with the victory over Koyo KANAMITSU 3:1 (11:8, 11:7, 10:12, 11:8); Medardas STANKEVICIUS beat YANG Shuo by same margin (6:11, 11:8, 11:5, 12:10) and Truls MOREGARD succeeded against SONG Jinghyun (2:11, 11:5, 11:9, 11:5).
"The performance of all three players was brilliant. PLETEA plays on very high level and his game is at the highest junior level. He overgrow his category in terms of results and play. For STANKEVICIUS I can only say: he is playing unbelievable table tennis. The rallies that he exchanged and the way he finalized the decisive game against Chinese player at 9:10 is hard to describe. It is rarely seen at the senior matches. MOREGARD struggled a little in the opening game, but after when he improved his receive, he completely unarmed the Korean player," explain ETTU Development Manager Neven CEGNAR.
In the penultimate stage Europe beat North America 3:1. Cristian PLETEA overcame both Victor LIU (12:10, 8:11, 11:9, 9:11, 11:9) and Jack WANG in the decisive match (11:8, 4:11, 11:6, 12:10), whilst Truls MOREGARD suffered by the hands of WANG 1:3 (14:12, 8:11, 1:11, 5:11). Medardas STANKEVICIUS overcame Jeremy HAZIN 3:0 (11:5, 11:7, 11:6).
In the Girls Teams Event Europe lost their final encounter against team of last year's bronze medalists, team of Latina America. Adriana DIAZ gave her team dream start in the duel against Anastasia KOLISH. She won full distance thriller 3:2 (11:4, 11:6, 9:11, 6:11, 11:4). Andreea DRAGOMAN suffered first defeat by the hands of Bruna TAKAHASHI 0:3 (9:11, 6:11, 7:11). Christina KALLBERG recorded the only win for Europe. She beat Esmerlyn CASTRO 3:0 (11:8, 11:4, 11:7). DIAZ sealed the match with the victory over DRAGOMAN 3:0 (11:2, 12:10, 11:6).
Previously in the match for the final Europe overcame North America 3:1. Andreea DRAGOMAN overcame Grace YANG (11:7, 7:11, 6:11, 11:8, 8:11) and added another point in the decisive match against Crystal WANG 3:0 (11:6, 11:3, 13:11). Anastasia KOLISH beat WANG as well 3:1 (5:11, 18:16, 11:7, 11:9). Ivy LIAO was the only player to score in North America team. She beat Christina KALLBERG 1:3 (11:6, 7:11, 9:11, 9:11).
"Both teams were at the top of the game in Boys and Girls Events, I can only praised their attitude, fighting spirit and performance. I think that they all lost a lot of energy in morning hours in the duels against North America. We beat them very hard, much harder than the numbers shows. Girls had their chances for gold too, but DIAZ and TAKAHASHI showed senior level of play today," said CEGNAR.