The Hungarian Open closed with a bang after the drama filled men’s singles event less than a week ago.
For our English men there were high and lows – both experienced by Paul Drinkhall in one game where he almost completed an excellent victory against Sharath Kamal Achanta before falling at the last.
Andrew Baggaley on the other hand was bringing his ‘A’ game by becoming the first player since Drinkhall in 2008 to reach a World Tour last 16 after beating both Emmanuel Lebesson and Adam Lindner in the later stages.
This time the pair are joined by Liam Pitchford who was at the Energis Masters last week taking on the might of Timo Boll and Werner Schlager in Germany. A rejuvenated Darius Knight will also hope for better while Daniel Reed and Chris Doran will hope to improve on their performances in Hungary.
Joanna Parker is the only English woman at the event as she hopes to pick up more big results as she continues her rise up the world rankings – consecutive career highs are boosting her Olympic dreams.
Throughout the tournament some of the English matches will also be shown on itTV – the matches for Wednesday and Thursday can be seen below.
Outside of English hopes the threat once again remains China. Ma Long was the winner of the men’s singles in Hungary and will again start as favourite although Korean Joo Se Hyuk, who made the final, will be hoping to break the Chinese stranglehold.
China’s Liu Shiwen won the women’s singles title in Hungary but will face fierce competition from all her team-mates in Slovenia as the women’s game remains controlled by the Chinese force.
In the men’s doubles it will be hard to look past the incredible partnership of Ma Long and Zhang Jike while Ding Ning and Guo Yan will battle Li Xiaoxia and Liu Shiwen for the title in the women’s event.
The under-21s events are much more open to players outside of the Chinese powerhouse with Japan’s Kasumi Ishikawa firm favourite for the girl’s title. In the boy’s singles Taipei player Chen Chien-An is a narrow favourite over Korea’s Jung Young Sik but they will all be chased by a strong European chasing-pack including Liam Pitchford.
itTV schedule – English matches LIVE
10:00 Doran v Dyjas
12:00 Knight v Vannucci
18:00 Parker/Postoaca v Jeric/Zera
19:00 Baggaley/Pitchford v Andersson/Svensson