Rob Davies and Will Bayley were among nine GB players to progress from the group stages through to the knockout rounds in the singles events at the Slovenia Open today. They will contest quarter-finals tomorrow, together with Paul Davies, Kim Daybell and David Wetherill, while Jane Campbell has reached the semi-finals stages and is assured of at least a bronze medal tomorrow.
Campbell recovered from losing her first match to the Croatian Andela Muzinic to beat Doris Mader from Austria 3-2 and progress to the quarter-finals where she played Pamela Fontaine of the USA. The London 2012 medalist won 3-0 to book a place in tomorrow’s semi-final and assure herself of at least a bronze medal.
“I was really up for it today,” said Campbell. “I was a bit rusty in my first match and it just took a bit of getting used to competing again – I haven’t competed since the European Championships last year and it didn’t come back to me fast enough. In the second match when I was 1-2 down I just wanted to fight – I thought I haven’t come all this way to go out in the group stages and I’m thrilled that I have a medal.”
European champion and world number one Rob Davies won both his group matches 3-0 against Federico Falco of Italy and the Brazilian Aloisio Lima Junior in his first competition of 2014.
“I’m reasonably happy,” he said after winning his second match. “I’m not playing my best yet but there were glimpses of it today so I’ve just got to keep going and keep improving through the tournament. I was nervous for the first match and in the second match I knew he was going to be a tough contender so it was just a matter of getting over the nerves and hopefully I’ll play better tomorrow and perform the way I can.”
Paul Davies, runner-up to his fellow Welshman in the European Championships last September, also progressed to the knockout stages as the winner of his group. After a 3-0 win against Martin Barbierik of Slovakia he had to overcome a determined Sylvio Keller from Switzerland in his second match before coming through 3-2.
Will Bayley is defending his men’s class 7 title and came through both his group matches with 3-0 wins over Michal Deigsler of Poland and the Belgian Arnaud Duquesne. The Sheffield based world number two from Tunbridge Wells knows there are tougher challenges ahead tomorrow.
“I was pleased with the way I played,” said Bayley, “especially in the second match because I played positively and won it comfortably and I had to do that to give me confidence for the next round. I didn’t miss a lot of balls so I was really pleased. It will be hard tomorrow so I need to be prepared and ready to go.”
Sheffield’s Kim Daybell won both his group matches 3-0 to progress to the knockout stages of the men’s class 10 event and the Leeds medical student has clearly benefited from some good wins on the UK able bodied circuit coming into the Slovenia Open.
“It was a good start,” said Daybell after his second win. “The first few matches of a tournament are always a bit nervy but I’m feeling pretty good going into the knockout stages. You just have to keep your head because everyone here is a good player so you have to keep focused.”
Torpoint’s David Wetherill (class 6) dropped a game in each of his three matches but three wins put him top of his group and gave him a bye in to tomorrow’s quarter-finals.
Widnes teenager Jack Hunter-Spivey (class 5) enjoyed one of the best wins of his career in his first group match beating world number three Mitar Palikuca of Serbia 3-1. He lost 3-1 against the Belgian Bart Brands in his second match but progressed to the last 16 where he played world number six Valentin Baus from Germany. Although Hunter-Spivey started well, winning the first game, the more experienced German fought back to take the match 3-1.
Londoner Aaron McKibbin was outplayed by the class 8 world number two from Sweden Emil Andersson in his first match but progressed through to the knockout stages with a 3-1 win over Miroslav Jambor from Slovakia. In the last 16 he played another Slovakian Richard Csejtey, the former world champion and London 2012 silver medalist. McKibbin started well but the Slovakian had too much experience and took the match 3-1.
Paul Karabardak came through his group in the men’s class 7 event with two wins from three to reach the last 16 in the men’s class 7 event but lost a close match 2-3 to Duquesne.
Ashley Facey Thompson, Sara Head and Thomas Matthews all recorded one win in their group matches but did not progress to the knockout stages.
GB Singles Results:
Men’s Class 1
Rob Davies beat Federico Falco (ITA) 3-0
Rob Davies beat Aloisio Lima Junior (BRA) 3-0
Paul Davies beat Martin Barbierik (SLK) 3-0
Paul Davies beat Sylvio Keller (SUI) 3-2
Thomas Matthews lost to Andrea Borgato (ITA) 1-3
Thomas Matthews lost to Marcus Sieger (GER) 1-3
Thomas Matthews beat Endre Major (HUN) 3-2
Men’s Class 5
Jack Hunter-Spivey beat Mitar Palikuca (SRB) 3-1
Jack Hunter-Spivey lost to Bart Brands (BEL) 1-3
Jack Hunter-Spivey lost to Valentin Baus (GER) 1-3
Men’s Class 6
David Wetherill beat Tim Laue (GER) 3-1
David Wetherill beat Raimondo Alecci (ITA) 3-1
David Wetherill beat Nikolay Bogach (RUS) 3-1
Men’s Class 7
Will Bayley beat Michal Deigsler (POL) 3-0
Will Bayley beat Arnaud Duquesne (BEL) 3-0
Billy Shilton lost to Jordi Morales (ESP) 0-3
Billy Shilton lost to Paulo Sergio Salmin Filho (BRA) 0-3
Paul Karabardak beat Gilberto Onofre (BRA) 3-0
Paul Karabardak lost to Thorsten Schwinn (GER) 0-3
Paul Karabardak beat Nicklas Thomas Westerberg 3-0
Paul Karabardak lost to Arnaud Duquesne (BEL) 2-3
Men’s Class 8
Aaron McKibbin lost to Emil Andersson (SWE) 0-3
Aaron McKibbin beat Miroslav Jambor (SVK) 3-1
Aaron McKibbin lost to Richard Csejtey (SVK) 1-3
Men’s Class 9
Ashley Facey Thompson lost to Linus Karlsson (SWE) 1-3
Ashley Facey Thompson beat Ing Hock Ting (MAS) 3-0
Ashley Facey Thompson lost to Tonnie Heijnen (NED) 0-3
Men’s Class 10
Kim Daybell beat Dario Andres Neira (ARG) 3-0
Kim Daybell beat Mohamad Azwar Bakar (MAS) 3-0
Nathan Thomas lost to Pavel Lukyanov (RUS) 0-3
Nathan Thomas beat Strasko Kocevski (MKD) 3-0
Nathan Thomas lost to Sebastian Powrozniak (POL) 0-3
Women’s Class 3
Jane Campbell lost to Andela Muzinic (CRO) 0-3
Jane Campbell beat Doris Mader (AUT) 3-2
Sara Head lost to Pamela Fontaine (USA) 0-3
Sara Head lost to Nergiz Altintas (TUR) 2-3
Sara Head beat Edith Sigala (MEX) 3-1
Jane Campbell beat Pamela Fontaine (USA) 3-0
Women’s Class 6
Felicity Pickard lost to Stephanie Grebe (GER) 1-3
Felicity Pickard lost to Fatma Fattakhova (RUS) 0-3
Felicity Pickard lost to Sandra Paovic (CRO) 0-3
Detailed results can be found at http://www.ipttc.org/
Follow the GB Para Table Tennis Team on Twitter @gbparatt