2023 US National Team Trials Continue With Action Filled Afternoon at 888 TTC
by Mark Thompson
Twelve Women Advance to Second Round – Four Men Stay in the Battle to Make the National Team with Play-In Round Victories
(Burlingame, CA – April 7, 2023) – The 2023 US National Team Trials continued Day One with an afternoon steeped in action and drama at the 888 Table Tennis Center in Burlingame, California. After opening the morning with the 34 men battling to advance to the Second Round, the Team Trials turned its attention to the Women’s US National Team this afternoon with nineteen ladies playing in four round robin groups – where three persons from each group would advance to the final twelve women seeking to represent the United States of America in international table tennis competition. The afternoon session also included four best-of-seven single-elimination “Play-In” matches for the guys to earn a position in the final twelve on the Men’s side.
In Group One, 2021 US National Champion Amy Wang was pretty much perfect losing just one game in four matches to confirm her top position in the group. Holding down the second slot in Group One was Joanna Sung who dominated all of her opponents other than Amy Wang. For the third slot out of Group One, the E-player in the group, Mandy Yu, won matches against both Rachel Wang and Genelia William, to pull off a bit of an upset and advance to the Second Round.
In Group Two, it was the second seed in the Group – Angie Tan – who won the day after defeating the top-rated Sarah Jalli of Ohio. But Jalli was good enough on this afternoon, beating her other three opponents to get the job done and advance to the Second Round. The third representative advancing to the Second Round from Group Two was California’s Tiffany Lam, who won a tight match over Angie Tan to earn that slot in what proved to be an extremely balanced group of athletes.
In Group Three, Rachel Sung lived up to her advance billing after blanking three of her opponents – Amber Liu, Kayleigh Cui, and Min (Winnie) Zhang – and surviving a seven-game thriller against Tiffany Ke – who in turn put zeros up against all of her opponents (other than Rachel Sung, of course) to take the second position. California’s Kayleigh Cui won a seven-game nail-biter against Amber Liu in her effort to earn the third slot for this Group.
In the four-player Group Four, 2022 US Nationals Finalist Sally Moyland won all three of her matches, including an epic seven-game challenge from Emily Tan, who also advanced to the Second Round along with Isabella Xu of North Carolina to fill out the final twelve women in contention to make the National Team.
On the men’s side, the afternoon offered four single-elimination Play-In Matches in order to fill out the final four – of a total of twelve – slots for Round Two. The Play-In Round featured a seven-game thriller between Californians William Bai and Ved Sheth, with Sheth staving off three match points in Game Seven to pull out the 13-11 win and the chance to move onto Round Two. It took extra points (14-12), as well, but only six games for Darryl Tsao to continue his quest to make the National Team by knocking off Jensen Feng. After dropping his first game to Aditya Godhwani (5-11), Daniel Tran rang off four straight games (11-8, 11-8, 11-5, 11-8) to earn a slot in the next round; and Dan Liu ran away from his opponent, Andrew Cao, in four straight (11-5, 11-6, 11-2, 11-9) to earn the twelfth and final slot in the Second Round action which will kick off bright and early tomorrow morning in the Northern California sunshine.
US National Team Trials action will kick off with two groups of six men playing in round bins starting at 9:00 am Pacific. The Women will also be in two groups of six for round robin action, which will begin at 9:45 am Pacific. The live stream of Table One from 888 TTC is at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jqjxNQQ7780. All results from the 2023 US National Team Trials can be found at www.Omnipong.com.