by Will Shortz

Jishan Liang at Westchester Little Open 10 Year Anniversary, Westchester Table Tennis Center  Oct 2021


The Westchester Open celebrated its 10th anniversary this past weekend and attracted its sixth-highest attendance ever — 182 players. Was part of the reason for the big turnout the free food? Everybody was welcome to a complimentary deli sandwich and a slice of anniversary cake.


In the final of the open event, North Carolina’s Jishan Liang (rated 2704) defeated Zongqi Zhong (2503) in straight games, taking home the $2,000 first prize. Jishan lost only one game in the entire tournament. Zongqi, though, who coaches at the New Jersey Table Tennis Club, put up a stiff fight in the final, losing by a razor-thin 14-12, 12-10, 11-9. Jishan is now the first player to win the Westchester Open four times in a row.


The other semifinalists in the open were Felix Lartey (2541), of the Ghanaian national table tennis team, who lost to Jishan; and 15-year-old Darius Fahimi (2446), of Franklin Lakes, N.J., who lost to Zongqi. Darius’s performance was his best at Westchester to date.


Other tournament players of note include 13-year-old Aditya Sareen (2442), who, impressively, won the U2500 event for the third time; and Subhankar Ranade, a postgraduate law student from India, playing in his first-ever U.S. tournament, who won both the U2350 and Handicap events. In the latter, given his estimated rating of 2300, Subhankar had to spot every opponent 7 points in each 11-point game — and he still won. Wow.


A video of the Liang/Zhong October final has been posted on YouTube.


The November Westchester Open, the club’s 110th, will be held Nov. 20-21.

Westchester Table Tennis Center


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