The draw has been made for the group stages of the singles events in the Paralympic table tennis tournament in Tokyo, which starts on Wednesday, August 25.
Women’s class 4-5:
Sue Bailey has been drawn in the same group as the reigning Paralympic, World and European champion Borislava Peric-Rankovic. The group is completed by Lu Pi-chun, the World number ten from Chinese Taipei who was given a wild card to compete here.
In her first Paralympic Games Megan Shackleton will face Zhou Ying, the 32-year-old World number one from China, and Bhavina Hasmukhbhai Patel, the World number 12 and 2020 Egypt Open champion from India.
Men’s class 1:
Also making his Paralympic debut Tom Matthews will play Ki Won Nam, the World number three and Paralympic bronze medallist from Korea, and Dmitry Lavrov, the European bronze medallist representing the Russian Paralympic Committee.
Men’s class 5:
Jack Hunter-Spivey will take on Cheng Ming Chih, the World number two from Chinese Taipei, and the Belgian Bart Brands, the World number 13 who won the Czech Open in 2018.
Men’s class 6:
In his fourth Paralympic Games Paul Karabardak has been drawn against his old rival Bobi Simion, the European silver medallist from Romania, and the Oceania champion from Australia Trevor Hirth.
Men’s class 7:
Will Bayley begins the defence of his title against Maksym Chudzicki, the 22-year-old from Poland who booked his place in the Paralympics by winning the World Qualification Tournament in June, and Chalermpong Punpoo, the World team silver medallist from Thailand.
Men’s class 8:
Ross Wilson heads a tricky group that includes Peng Weinan, the 19-year-old Asian champion, and Clement Berthier, the 21-year-old Frenchman who won the World Qualification Tournament.
Billy Shilton takes on the formidable Viktor Didukh from Ukraine, the World number one, four-time European champion, former World champion and Paralympic team gold medallist, and the African champion Victor Farinloye from Nigeria.
Aaron McKibbin faces former World number one Piotr Grudzien from Poland, the Paralympic and European bronze medallist, and the Oceania champion Nathan Pellissier from Australia.
Men’s class 9:
Ashley Facey Thompson’s group opponents are Lev Kats, the 20-year-old World number four and European silver medallist from Ukraine, home favourite Koyo Iwabuchi, the 26-year-old World number five and World Championships bronze medallist from Japan, and old rival Iurii Nozdrunov, the former World number two, World silver medallist and World team silver medallist representing the Russian Paralympic Committee.
On his Paralympic debut Joshua Stacey takes on the former Chinese three-time World champion and London 2012 Paralympic champion Ma Lin, who now represents Australia, the Italian Mohamed Amine Kalem, the World number six and Paralympic bronze medallist, and wild card Chao Ming Chee, the Asian Para Games bronze medallist from Malaysia.
The group matches take place on August 25/26 and 27 with the knockout rounds starting on August 27.