Rio Paralympics: The 16 year-old Sophie WALLOE reached semis in a stylePhoto: Courtesy ITTF
Two defending champions from 2012 London, Natalia PARTYKA and Kelli VAN ZON won all their games in the group stage to reach semi-finals. Jiri SUCHANEK upset defending champion Jan RIAPOS in the Men`s Class 2
The 16 year-old Sophie WALLOE from Denmark stole the show in the Riocentro Pavilion 3, securing the spot in the Women`s Singles Class 10 semi-final of the 2016 Rio Paralympic Games. She managed to recover from 0:2 to 3:2 in the decisive clash of the group stage, against Australia`s Melissa Tapper – 3:2 (5:11, 5:11, 11:8, 12:10, 11:8). Previously they were both beaten by defending champion Natalia PARTIKA from Poland, who is a main candidate for the gold. Semi-final pairs are: YANG Qian (China) – Sophie WALLOE (Denmark), Natalia PARTYKA (Poland) – Bruna COSTA ALEXANDRE (Brazil).
Four European representatives will play in the semi-final of Women`s Singles Class 6: Sandra PAOVIC (Croatia) – Maryna LYTOVCHENKO (Ukraine), Steffi GREBE (Germany) – Antonina KHODZYNSKA (Ukraine). PAOVIC and GREBE reached top spots of their groups, having 2-0 score.
Defending champion from 2012 London, Kelly VAN ZON from Netherlands and Kubra KORKUT from Turkey will play against Stephanie CHAN (Canada) and KIM Seong-Ok (Korea) respectively in the semi-finals of Women`s Singles Class 7. VAN ZON and KORKUT competed in the same Group A where Netherlands` player won all three encounters.
Ingela LUNDBAECK (Sweden) beat Khetam ABUWAD from Jordan in straight games to reach the semi-final of Women`s Singles Class 5.
Silver medalist four years ago Thu KAMKASOMPHOU (France) and Juliane WOLF (Germany) progressed to the semi-final of Women`s Singles Class 8, having each 2-1 score from Group A.
Women`s Singles Class 1-2 bronze medalist from 2012 London, Isabelle LAFAYE (France) lost to Chilchitparyak BOOTWANSIRINA (Thailand) in four games of the quarter-finals. Giada ROSSI (Italy) defeated Dorota Anna BUCLAW (Poland) 3:2 (8:11, 11:5, 9:11, 11:5, 11:7) in the most exciting game of that class so far in Rio.
Karolina PEK from Poland inscribed all three wins in the Group B of Women`s Singles Class 9 Event, to secure semi-final berth. She will meet Chinese LIU Meng in the penultimate stage.
One more representative of Poland ensured its spot in the semis, Krystyna SIEMIENIECKA, in the Women`s Singles Class 11. She joined in that stage Natalia KOSMINA from Ukraine.
The runner-up from Men`s Class 1 from 2012 London, Jean-Francois DUCAY from France and bronze medalist, Paul DAVIES from Great Britain are approaching to these achievements. Both finished second in their groups to secure their places in the quarter-final stage. Defending champion Holger NIKELIS (Germany) lost both his games in the Group D, hence will not continue his way to the new medal.
Four Old Continent`s players reached the semi-final of the Men`s Class 2 Event. Czech Republic Jiri SUCHANEK upset defending champion Jan RIAPOS from Slovakia, coming from 0:2 to 3:2. Next SUCHANEK`s opponent will be the 2012 bronze medalist from France, Fabien LAMIRAULT.
The 2012 Men`s Class 3 bronze medalist, German`s Thomas SCHMIDBERGER overcame Jordan`s Asama ABU JAME 3:0 (11:4, 11:4, 11:9) to reach quarter-final. Two his compatriots joined him, Thomas BRUCHLE and Jan GURTLER, as well as Frenchman Florian MERRIEN who beat Vasyl PETRUNIV (Ukraine) in full five games.
Men`s Class 6 brought two amazing quarter-finals to two Spanish players, but just one managed to progress in the semis. The 2012 runner-up Alvaro VALERA VARGAS beat David WETHERILL (Great Britain) in one of the longest matches (47 minutes) of the day – 3:2 (9:11, 10:12, 12:10, 11:8, 11:8) while Alberto SEOANE ALCARAZ lost to Thailand`s Rungroj THAINIYOM 3:2 (11:7, 11:9, 4:11, 9:11, 11:7).
Spain has one more semi-finalist in the Men`s Class 7, Jordi GARCIA MORALES who will play against 2012 semi-finalist William BAYLEY.