4:47 am
22 May 2024

USA & Hong Kong Forced To Fight Back On Day Two At Women's World Junior Teams

25 Jul 2023

USA and Hong Kong China mounted entertaining comebacks to survive their ties on day two of the pools stage at the 2023 WSF Women's World Junior Team Championship in Melbourne.

With teams playing a 1-3-2 string order, it was up to each team's top player to set the tone.

On the first match on the glass court, No.3 seeds USA looked comfortable early on in their tie with No.5 seeds England, with first string Caroline Fouts racing into a 2/0 lead against Asia Harris.

The England number one, however, battled back brilliantly to give the five-time champions the lead with a hat-trick of 11-6 wins before Riya Navani found parity for USA following a hard-fought win over Isabel McCullough.

In the decider against Amelie Haworth, Madison Ho edged a tense opening game 12-10, which she followed up with convincing 11-2, 11-4 wins to earn a crucial win for USA

Afterwards, tie winner Ho said: "I just came in thinking 'try not to think about the scoreline and just focus on what's happening on court.' I was going to do whatever it takes.

"I thought of the win as being like A-Z, I had to get through each letter first.

"I'm very happy, and grateful to my teammates for supporting me. It was a great battle!"

In the evening session, on Court Nine, Hong Kong China launched a fightback of their own as Ena Kwong and Sze Wing Wai got the team out of trouble after Anahat Singh had beaten their first string Toby Tse to give India the lead.

Elsewhere, the higher seeded teams secured more comfortable wins: No.12 seeds Singapore impressed in a dominant win over No.13 seeds Ireland, No.2 seeds Malaysia cruised past hosts and No.8 seeds Australia to ensure they will top Pool B, and top seeds Egypt took maximum points from Pool A with a 3/0 win over No.7 seeds Canada.

Today's defeat for Australia means that they will face rivals New Zealand for the second spot in Pool B tomorrow, with the top two teams in each pool going through to the knockout stage.