Australia is in fine form after day 1 of the ITTF Para Table Tennis World Championships in Beijing, with Paralympian Melissa Tapper taking out her first round of pool matches against Chinese Taipei and Turkey.
To begin the round-robin style competition, Tapper was up against Chinese Taipei competitor Shiau Wen Tian. After a nervous first set loss, she went on to take home the win 3-1. Tapper was successful once again in her next round, beating Turkey’s Umran Ertis 4-1.
Tapper’s final pool match will be played against Russia’s Inna Karmaeva who is currently ranked at #20
Although the Australian team performed well under pressure, the four other athletes that make up the team were unable to follow up on from Tapper’s success, all narrowly missing out on wins.
Fellow Victorian, Chris Addis was no match for Turkey’s Nesim Turan, whose extraordinary reach and powerful shots proved to be too much for Addis.
Mark Harris played an outstandingly close second set; 9-11 with an unfortunate overall loss of 0-3 to China. Similarly, Nathan Pellissier played a close 3rd set; 9-11 and was defeated by Poland.
Outplayed by an experienced player, Trevor Hirth was unable to get the upper hand against France with a 0-3 loss.
The ITTF Para Table Tennis World Championships are taking place in Beijing, China from 6-15 September, with 327 athletes from 49 countries participating.
Australia’s full results from Day 1:
Women Singles Class 10 (14 Competitors)
Melissa TAPPER (AUS) Rank # 4 defeated Shiau Wen TIAN (TPE) Rank # 17 – 6-11, 11-6, 11-5, 11-5
Melissa TAPPER (AUS) Rank # 4 defeated Ümran ERTIS (TUR) Rank # 7 – 9-11, 11-7, 10-12, 11-5, 11-9
Final pool match will be played against Inna KARMAEVA (RUS) Rank # 20
Men Singles Class 3 (24 Competitors)
Mark HARRIS (AUS) Rank # 91 lost to Ping ZHAO (CHN) Rank # 9 – 7-11, 7-11, 9-11
Final pool match will be played against Jan GUERTLER (GER) Rank # 11
Men Singles Class 4 (16 Competitors)
Christopher ADDIS (AUS) Rank # 49 lost to Nesim TURAN (TUR) Rank # 6 – 1-11, 3-11, 2-11
Christopher ADDIS (AUS) Rank # 49 lost to Astan ADYOS (INA) Rank # 18 – 7-11, 6-11, 2-11
Final pool match will be played against Il Sang CHOI (KOR) Rank # 5
Men Singles Class 6 (18 Competitors)
Trevor HIRTH (AUS) Rank # 26 lost to Bastien GRUNDELER (FRA) Rank # 5 – 5-11, 9-11, 3-11
Final pool match will be played against Chao CHEN (CHN) Rank # 11
Men Singles Class 8 (18 Competitors)
Nathan PELLISSIER (AUS) Rank # 63 lost to Piotr GRUDZIEN (POL) Rank # 6 – 4-11, 7-11, 9-11
Final pool match will be played against Thomas BOUVAIS (FRA) Rank # 7
By APC Media and Table Tennis Australia
Photo with thanks to the International Table Tennis Federation