Zagreb-Crotia, May 28, 2012: Croatia’s TAN Ruiwu and Hungary’s Szandra PERGEL emerged as the respective Men’s and Women’s Singles champions at the ITTF Euro-Africa Circuit Zagreb Open on Sunday 27th May 2012.
At the final hurdle, TAN Ruiwu, the no.1 seed, accounted for compatriot, Roko Tosic, the no.5 seed, in four straight games; whilst at same stage, Szandra PERGEL defeated Russia’s Polina Mikhailova, the winner one week earlier in Belarus, in a contest of a very different nature.
Seeded no.8, the 23 year old Hungarian recorded a full distance seven games win over the no.5 seed.
A hard fought final and for both champions’ elect, there were hard fought semi-finals. TAN Ruiwu needed the full seven games to overcome Russia’s Mikail PAYKOV, the no.5 seed; whilst slightly more comfortably at the same hurdle, Szandra PERGEL ended the progress of Linda CREEMERS of the Netherlands, the no.6 seed, in six games.
It was for both players their first international singles titles of note but both were no strangers to the international scene.
Szandra PERGEL was a member of the Hungarian outfit who won gold in the Women’s Team event at the European Championships in Belgrade in 2007; whilst in 2005, she was a silver medallist in the Girls’ Team competition at the World Junior Championships in the Austrian city of Linz.
Similarly, TAN Ruiwu has excelled on the big stage; at the Beijing Olympic Games in 2008 he reached the quarter-final stage of the Men’s Singles event.
Semi-Final: Tan Ruiwu (CRO) bt Mikhail PAYKOV (RUS) 11-6, 10-12, 11-7, 8-11, 11-1, 9-11, 11-8
Semi-Final: Roko Tosic (CROA) bt Romain LORENTZ (FRA) 11-6, 9-11, 10-12, 11-6, 11-7, 9-11, 11-9
Final: Tan Ruiwu (CRO) bt Roko Tosic (CRO) 11-9, 11-8, 11-7, 11-4
Semi-Final: Polina MIKHAOLVA (RUS) bt Andrada VINCZE (ROU) 11-4, 11-2, 11-2, 6-11, 11-2
Semi-Final: Szandra PERGEL (HUN) bt Linda CREEMERS (NED) 11-7, 8-11, 11-6, 10-12, 12-10, 11-7
Final: Szandra PERGEL (HUN) by Polina MIKhAILOVA (RUS) 5-11, 11-3, 11-6, 11-6, 11-13, 3-11, 11-5)
PHOTO: ZAGREB ORGANISING COMMITTEE