Tokyo, 25th October 2009 – Japan’s Jin UEDA is the winner of the 2009 ITTF Junior Circuit Finals in the Boys’ Singles event. The top seeded Japanese saved one match point in the sixth game and wrestled down the Egyptian Omar ASSAR in the Tokyo Metropolitan Gymnasium. UEDA’s compatriot Misaki MORIZONO was victorious in the Junior Girls’ Singles event. The Japanese prevailed in five games against Germany’s Kathrin MÜHLBACH.
Different Fortunes for Last Year’s Runner-Ups
Omar ASSAR and Misaki MORIZONO were both silver medallists at last year’s Junior Circuit Finals in Helsingborg, Sweden. While MORIZONO succeeded to win this time, ASSAR will never win this tournament. Born in 1991, the Egyptian will not be in the Junior age category next year anymore.
The Boys’ final was open until the very end. Omar ASSAR had a 3-1 lead in games and a match point in the sixth game. However, Jin UEDA escaped the loss. “I have the highest world ranking of all players in this tournament”, Jin UEDA said, “therefore I wanted to win by all means. I participated to win.”
Morizono Beat Her Training Partner
The 17 year old Japanese Misaki MORIZONO overcame Germany’s Kathrin MÜHLBACH in five games 11-7, 11-5, 12-10, 9-11 and 11-5. While the top seeded Asian was expected to be in the final, the German is one of the positive surprises at these Junior Circuit Finals. “I expected Barbora BALAZOVA the Slovak girl in the final”, MORIZONO said. However, she was well-prepared for the German opponent too. “We practice often together.” MORIZONO, who plays in the German Bundesliga for Hannover 96, will receive 3,800 US dollars prize money for the title on home soil.
Yin Hang Crowned Cadet Champion as Niwa’s China Complex Continues
YIN Hang versus Koki NIWA was the dream final in the Cadet Boys’ Singles event. U15 World no.1 against the no.3, China against Japan. For most of the table tennis experts the Japanese is the more talented player, but NIWA squandered the win. The Japanese failed to decide the match he had dominated in the beginning. One match point in the fifth and a 9-7 lead in the sixth game were not enough. The Chinese became stronger and the Japanese suffered a bitter defeat.
At last year’s World Junior Championships in Madrid, Koki NIWA was about to eliminate the Chinese team in the semi-final. He had a 7-3 lead against YAN An but lost 8-11. Today’s final reminded at that match. NIWA should have won but he did not succeed. Especially in the sixth game, YIN Hang seemed vulnerable. Still Koki NIWA is the most successful player of the 2009 Cadet Challenge with two gold (Team and Doubles) and one silver (Singles) medals.
Yang Ha Eun Leaves Tokyo Unbeaten
Korea’s Under 15 world no.1 YANG Ha Eun won the Cadet Girls’ Singles event. The 15 year old overcame Japan’s defending champion Ayuka TANIOKA in four straight games 11-2, 11-8, 12-10 and 11-4.
The most critical moment for YANG was in the third game, when she was 8-6 ahead but lost the next four points after the Japanese coach took the “Time Out”. However, the Korean proved to have the skills of a champion. “Today it was the second time against her”, YANG said correctly about the events in Tokyo she and her opponent played. “Normally I don’t like choppers, but I got used to her style.”