Indian table tennis player G Sathiyan clinched the gold medal after defeating Japans Kazuhiro Yoshimura 4-2 (11-7, 3-11, 11-6, 6-11, 13-11, 11-7) in the men’s singles final of the 2017 ITTF Challenge Spanish Open here.
The ninth seeded Indian’s calculated game enabled him to prevail over the 11th seed, who displayed sheer power on Sunday night.
Incidentally, this was Sathiyan’s second major title as he had won the singles gold two years ago in the ITTF World Tour Belgium Open.
Leading 2-1, Sathiyan led the fourth game 4-2 but Yoshimura won the next four points to go 6-4 up and from there he never surrendered.
Sathiyan played brilliantly in the next and led 7-6 before calling timeout. On returning, the Indian moved ahead 9-7 but then lost the next three points when the score stood 2-2.
With the match hanging in the balance, Yoshimura had a good chance of taking a 3-2 lead but lost miserably despite being 11-10.
Sathiyan won the next three points to secure the game and consolidate his position.
In the sixth game, Sathiyan was confidence personified as he went ahead 5-2, to force the Japanese to call timeout.
But it did not help him much as Sathiyan, pressing home the advantage, stepped on the gas pedal to create a wide gap, taking complete control of the final.
Incidentally, this was the second ITTF Challenge Series title won by an Indian this year after Soumyajit Ghosh beat compatriot Anthony Amalraj in the Chile Open final a few months ago.