July 30, 2012

Following the most successful day in Australian Table Tennis Olympic history, with all four athletes claiming an opening round win, day 2 saw only two athletes still in contention for the medals.

Jian Fang Lay (AUS) lined up against Li Xue of France in the second round of the Women’s Singles event. In a match that saw Jian get off to a slow start and fall behind two games to nil, she was able to claim the third game before falling behind three games to one. Jian showed true fighting spirit and rallied back to a deciding seventh game. With a lead of 6-3 half way through the game, all her supporters were on the edge of their seat, however today was not to be the day for Jian, and she was unable to maintain the form that saw her force the deciding game.

Li Xue (FRA) [WR 72] defeated Jian Fang Lay (AUS) [WR 130] (11-7, 13-11, 7-11, 11-3, 9-11, 9-11, 11-6)

William Henzell (AUS) was out to better his performance from the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games, and looking to book a place into the Third Round (Final 32). The man in his way was Joao Monteiro of Portugal, following a very shaky start, William was able to regain his composure and stormed ahead into a three game to one lead. Monteiro forced the match into a sixth game, which proved to see a tense finish to the match in which William saved a game point, before taking the match on his first match point. This result is the best result for an Oceania Male Table Tennis athlete in the history of the Olympic Games.

William Henzell (AUS) [WR 130] defeated Joao Monteiro (POR) [WR 39] (2-11, 11-8, 11-9, 11-6, 6-11, 12-10)

Day 3 will see William Henzell (AUS) line up against one of the most coveted players in Table Tennis history – Vladimir Samsunov of Belarus.


Photo courtesy of Australian Olympic Committee