KOBE, Jun MIZUTANI, who one day earlier had celebrated his 23rd birthday, delighted the crowds in the Green Arena in Kobe late on the afternoon of Sunday 10th June; he beat Korean’s OH Sangeun in the final of the Men’s Singles event at the GAC GROUP 2012 ITTF World Tour Japan Open, to secure the second title of the day for the host nation.
Earlier Hiroko FUJII and Misako WAKAMIYA had also inflicted pain on Korea. They secured the Women’s Doubles crown beating DANG Yeseo and SEOK Hajung in the final.
However, the hero of the hour was undoubtedly Jun MIZUTANI; in the morning session of play at the semi-final stage he had stared defeat in the face in the vital seventh game of his duel against Russia’s in-form Alexander SHIBAEV; he trailed 4-8 before reeling off six points in a row and securing victory on his second match point.
Success for Japan in the Men’s Singles event; in the Women’s Singles it was gold for Spain.
SHEN Yanfei secured the title causing a brace of upsets on the concluding day. Seeded no.12, she accounted for Japan’s Ai FUKUHARA , the no.4 seed, in the semi-finals and Korea’s KIM Kyung Ah, the no.5 seed in the final.
Three silver medals for Korea but by definition there had to be one gold.
KIM Minseok and SEO Hyun Deok beat OH Sangeun and RYU Seungmin to win an all-Korean Men’s Doubles final.
Semi-Final: OH Sangeun (KOR) bt GAO Ning (SIN) 11-7, 11-8, 18-16, 11-5
Semi-Final: Jun MIZUTANI (JPN) bt Alexander SHIBAEV (RUS) 9-11, 11-7, 11-4, 11-7, 9-11, 5-11, 11-9
Final: Jun MIZUTANI (JPN) bt OH Sangeun (KOR) 11-9, 11-9, 11-13, 4-11, 14-12, 11-5
Semi-Final: KIM Kyungah (KOR) bt DANG Yeseo (KOR) 11-7, 11-3, 11-5, 11-5
Semi-Final: SHEN Yanfei (ESP) bt Ai FUKUHARA (JPN) 11-8, 5-11, 7-11, 7-11, 11-8, 11-7, 11-5
Final: SHEN Yanfei (ESP) bt KIM Kyungah (KOR) 5-11, 11-4, 11-8, 14-12, 17-15
Final: KIM Minseok & SEO Hyun Deok (KOR) bt OH Sangeun & RYU seungmin (KOR) 11-5, 7-11, 11-5, 8-11, 11-3, 10-12, 11-9
Final: Hiroko FUJII & Misako WAKAMIYA (JPN) bt DANG Yeseo & SEOK Hajung (KOR) 11-9, 13-11, 11-8, 11-2.
Photo: Tetsu Yamashita