Competent performance sends Liu Jia into last fourPhoto: Rémy Gros ITTF
2017 ITTF Europe Top 16 Cup
Saturday 4th February marked the start of the 2017 ITTF Europe Top 16 Cup main draw in Antibes, and the winner of the Women’s Singles title at the tournament in 2005 LIU Jia is now just one match win away from appearing in the final.
LIU put in a fine performance to see off Romania’s Daniela MONTEIRO DODEAN in her quarter-finals match (11-6, 11-8, 11-7, 11-7) and, following the conclusion of the tie, the Austrian representative stated that she is feeling calm ahead of the next round.
“I’m relaxed, I feel good and I don’t think too much that I’m one win away from the final. I’m happy for the next match and I just want to play good. I don’t mind who I play next. I just want to play for myself. I feel a little bit tired but this is my last match for today,” said LIU Jia.
Awaiting LIU Jia in the last four is Petrissa SOLJA after she came through a difficult encounter with Bernadette SZOCS.
SZOCS had been the surprise package on the opening day when she registered impressive wins over LI Qian and Viktoria PAVLOVICH to advance beyond the group stage for the first time ever.
SZOCS, however, was unable to obtain a similar outcome in the last eight as SOLJA held firm to claim the win in six ends (11-9, 11-8, 6-11, 11-9, 7-11, 11-6).
Day one saw LI Jie of the Netherlands pull off a notable recovery effort against Poland’s LI Qian, and one day later she has been at it again.
The Dutch contestant struggled to get up to speed at the start of her match against Matilda EKHOLM, but a determined performance from LI produced another powerful comeback result (7-11, 11-13, 11-5, 11-7, 11-8, 11-9) setting up a semi-final fixture with German player Sabine WINTER who shocked the crowd with her seventh game triumph over Georgina POTA (11-9, 8-11, 11-2, 6-11, 11-5, 7-11, 11-8).
“Today I am very happy. At 0-2 down I was thinking that I needed to calm down and to keep the ball on the table and limit my mistakes. Overall, I am happy,” LI Jie.