Adriana DIAZ and Hugo CALDERANO named Pan American Champions in ColombiaPhoto: Courtesy ITTF
Just 17-year-old, DIAZ, proved herself as one of the most promising player in the region
Puerto Rico’s Adriana DIAZ and Brazil’s Hugo CALDERANO are the Pan American Champions, after the duo won the Women’s and Men’s Singles title respectively at the 2017 ITTF-Pan American Championships that concluded yesterday, 17 September 2017 in Colombia.
Just 17-year-old, DIAZ, proved herself as one of the most promising player in the region, achieving the amazing feat by defeating 2015 Pan American Games Champion WU Yue (USA).
In the heated final, both players played their best level of table tennis and treated the local fans to an epic seesaw battle for the title. It was DIAZ who prevailed in the close encounter, winning 4:3 (11:8, 7:11, 11:3, 5:11, 6:11, 11:9, 7:11) to win her first Pan Championships title.
CALDERANO, who caused a major table tennis craze at the Rio 2016 Olympic Games on home soil last year, was in his top form against colleague Thiago MONTEIRO in the Men’s Singles final.
The 21-year-old gave MONTEIRO no chance to fight back in the final race for Gold, sealing his victory in four straight games (11:8, 11:8, 11:7, 11:9) to take the title.
Both CALDERANO and MONTEIRO are part of the Brazil team that won the Men’s Team Gold earlier in the tournament. Together with teammates Eric JOUTI and Vitor ISHIY, the team sealed a 3:0 victory against the second seeded Argentina team of Horacio CIFUENTES, Martin BENTANCOR, Gaston ALTO and Pablo TABACHNIK.
Like in the case of the Brazilian Men, the Brazilian Women’s Team of GUI Lin, Bruna ALEXANDRE and Bruna TAKAHASHI also took the top place on the podium, defeating top seeded USA Team of Grace YANG, WU Yue, Crystal WANG and Rachel YANG 3:1 in the team final.
Brazil proved themselves as the table tennis powerhouse in the region, bagging the Men’s Doubles and Mixed Doubles titles as well. ISHIY and JOUTI winning a full distanced five games Men’s Doubles battle 3:2 (7:11, 11:6, 11:6, 9:11, 11:8) against Cuba’s Jorge CAMPOS and PEREIRA, while ISHIY teaming with TAKAHASHI to claim the Mixed Doubles crown 3:0 (11:8, 11:4, 11:7) against JOUTI and GUI.
Canada took home the last medal available, with Alicia COTE and ZHANG Mo prevailing 3:0 (12:10, 11:6, 11:5) over American pair Crystal WANG and WU Yue to claim the Women’s Doubles title.
Being the top finishing team for Latin America and North America respectively in both the Men’s and Women’s Team event, Brazil and USA are now qualified to represented their respective continents at the 2018 Team World Cup to be held in London, England from 22-25 February 2018.