Team Oceania at World Cadet Challenge

On October 30, The Girls’ Oceania U15 Team took flight to Hyderabad, India to compete in the annual World Cadet Challenge. The 2010 Oceania Girls’ Team featured Lily Phan (Australia,) Jennifer Tseng (New Zealand,) Tina Mii (French Polynesia) and Fleur Dumortier (New Caledonia.) After attending a training camp in New Zealand with coach Miao Miao and Team Manager Scott Houston, the team headed straight to India together with one goal in mind; to win a medal.

Although that goal wasn’t realised in 2010, every year the team continues to develop and inch closer to their dream.

table tennis tournament
table tennis tournament

The Teams Events commenced on the 2nd of November with Oceania facing the strong outfit of
Asia in their first match. First up Lily Phan (AUS) put up a fight against Doo Hoi Kem but went down in straight games 3-0. Jennifer Tseng (NZ) also put up a strong battle against China’s Liu Xi, going down 3-11, 10-12, and 11-13. Tina Mii (PYF) challenged Japan’s Eka So, eventually losing the match 8-11, 8-11, 8-11. Lily Phan took the first game off the Chinese star before she was defeated 3-1. Jennifer Tseng was then unable to match it with Doo Hoi Kem, going down in straight games. Although Oceania put up a strong fight, Asia won the match 5-0.

Team Oceania then faced Pan America, only to come to a similar result. Lily Phan (AUS) made a good start in the opening match against Anqi Luo (CAN) taking the first game 11-8, but couldn’t continue the momentum, losing the match 3-1. Jennifer Tseng (NZ) and Fleur Dumortier (NCL) put up a strong fight against worthy opposition but both went down in straight sets to Ariel Hsing (USA) and Gremlis Arvelo (VEN) consecutively. Lily Phan then took to the court against 11th seed Aerial Hsing (USA) in what was to be a close fought match. Lily wasn’t able to hold onto her initial lead and eventually went down 3-1. In the final match Anqi Luo (CAN) proved too strong for Jennifer Tseng (NZ) winning the battle and taking out the match for Pan America 5-0.

After finishing last in the round robin, Oceania looked to redeem themselves in the main draw against home country, India. India proved far too strong, defeating Oceania 3-0 and taking out every match in straight games.

Team Oceania then drew Africa to play off for positions 5-6. Jennifer Tseng (NZ) took to the court first and was narrowly defeated in a match against Katia Kessaci (ALG) that was closer than the score line reflected. Jennifer went down 12-14, 15-17, and 6-11 in a close fought match. After trailing 2 games to nil against Alia Doaa (EGY), Lily Phan (AUS) clawed her way back into the match to level at 2-2 and force the match into a decider set. Unfortunately she wasn’t able to close it out, losing the fifth game 11-6. Fleur Dumortier took the first game off Fatimo Bello (NGR) 14-12, but was eventually defeated 3-1. Africa wins 3-0.

Teams Placing:
1 – Asia
2 – Europe
3 – India
4 – Pan America
5 – Africa
6 – Oceania

In the Cadet Girls Singles Event, Fleur Dumortier and Tina Mii both came up against world class opposition and finished 6th in their groups. Jennifer Tseng (NZ) went one step better, defeating Thomie Mossemba (CGO) and finishing fifth in her group.

It was Lily Phan’s fourth appearance at a World Cadet Challenge, and she demonstrated that experience counts for everything when she took to the court in the Girls Singles Event. In her first match she was narrowly defeated by Croatia’s Mateja Jeger in four games. She then followed with an impressive straight games victory over Fatimo Bello of Nigeria. After their close fought match in the team’s event, Lily once again faced the experienced Ariel Hsing (USA.) Ariel is one of the only players to surpass Lily’s four appearances at a World Cadet Challenge, with an impressive five appearances for the USA under her belt. The rematch proved to be another nail-biter. Lily trailed 2-1 before narrowly clinching the fourth game 12-10 to push the match to a decider. The Australian put in a great effort and came so close to victory, only to be pipped at the final post 11-7.

Lily then came out firing against India’s Camelia Sil, steaming ahead to a 2-0 lead. Unfortunately she was unable to hold onto her initial momentum, narrowly going down in the next three games to lose the match 3-2. Lily’s fifth and final match proved to be her most successful. She once again came out strong against Japan’s Eka So, taking an early 2 games to nil lead in the match. The Japanese girl fought back to level at 2 games all and force the match into a decider. On this occasion, Lily emerged victorious from the fifth game, taking out the match 11-9 at the final hurdle. Eka So went on to win the Girls Singles Event, proving what an impressive victory this was for Lily.
The four Oceania girls then played off in the second stage of the Girls Singles for positions 13-24.

Final positions:
Lily Phan – 18th
Jennifer Tseng – 19th
Fleur Dumortier – 20th
Tina Mii – 24th

Congratulations to the Oceania Girls’ Team on their impressive performances at the 2010 World Cadet Challenge.

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