Helshan Weerasinghe

Weerasinghe tops group before bowing out in Belgium

Paul Stimpson

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Helshan Weerasinghe reached the main draw at the Belgium Open before bowing out to former top-100 player Abdel-Kader Salifou.

Weerasinghe, 19, topped his group in the Men’s Singles by winning two matches against opponents from Luxembourg and Belgium, plus a walkover.

He faced Frenchman Salifou, who was inside the top 100 in the world in 2014 and was last in the ranking list at No 131 in May this year, and lost in five close games to an opponent seeded 18th.

Weerasinghe, currently ranked 414 in the world, went out of the Under-21 Men’s Singles in the group stage, winning one of his three group matches.

Veteran Mike O’Driscoll was also competing at the ITTF World Tour Challenge Series event in De Haan. He enjoyed a good victory over world No 273 Elia Schmid of Switzerland in his first match, before losing to Andres Levenko (AUT, 278) and Thibaut Darcis (BEL, 520).


Men’s Singles
Qualifying Group 7
Helshan Weerasinghe bt Xia Cheng (LUX) 4-1 (11-8, 11-4, 11-8, 7-11, 11-3)
Weerasinghe bt Khalid Assar (EGY) w/o
Weerasinghe bt Jasper Merckx (BEL) 4-1 (9-11, 11-2, 11-7, 11-2, 11-3)

Qualifying Group 20
Mike O’Driscoll bt Elia Schmid (SUI) 4-1 (8-11, 11-9, 11-7, 13-11, 11-7)
Andreas Levenko (AUT) bt O’Driscoll 4-0 (11-2, 11-6, 11-5, 11-7)
Thibaut Darcis (BEL) bt O’Driscoll 4-1 (11-6, 11-4, 11-5, 4-11, 11-5)

Round of 64
Abdel-Kader Salifou (FRA) bt Weerasinghe 4-1 (11-6, 11-9, 9-11, 11-8, 11-8)

Under-21 Men’s Singles
Qualifying Group 5
Alexis Mommessin (FRA) bt Helshan Weerasinghe 3-1 (11-7, 11-9, 3-11, 11-7)
Kim Doyub (KOR) bt Weerasinghe 3-2 (11-8, 11-8, 8-11, 5-11, 12-10)
Weerasinghe bt Thibaut Darcis (BEL) 3-0 (11-3, 11-5, 11-7)

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