Cubans win in U-11 and U-13 Pan American Table Tennis Championship
Havana, September 24 (RHC)-- Cuba's Andy Maqueira stands out at the U-11 and U-13 Pan American Table Tennis Championships in Santo Domingo 2022, in the Dominican Republic, where he made it into the top 16 of the individual event in his category.
Maqueira (U-11) advanced as second in his qualifying group and in the main draw he opened with a 3-1 set win (5-11, 11-6, 12-10, 12-10) over American Arjun Kumar.
"Andy has surprised us, he is having the competition of his life. First time outside Cuba and he has played very well", recognized to the JIT publication the national commissioner of this discipline, Bárbaro Oliva, who also recalled that the Mayabechense has been practicing this sport for only two years.
"He did not even go through the lower categories. In the midst of the covid-19 pandemic, he changed soccer for table tennis and is winning matches," Oliva praised. Reaching the round of 16 puts Andy up against Brazil's Flabio de Sousa, who advanced directly to this stage.
Among the under-13s, a good performance was also enjoyed by Cuban Alejandro Martinez, who won 3-1 (11-8, 5-11, 11-8, 12-10) against Ecuador's Ricardo Bernal. This Saturday in the round of 16 he will have as opponent the Brazilian Felipe Yoshihiro de Melo.
"Another one of our talented children, national champion U-13 and U-15, and soon to be enrolled in our technical development school center", said the director, happy for the results of both players in the event that takes place in the Table Tennis Pavilion of Parque del Este.
In the doubles competition there was also good news for the Island, as Andy and Alejandro advanced to the round of 16 after defeating Canadians Darren Rao and Francois Morin 3-1 (11-4, 11-6, 9-11, 11-2). They will now meet Brazil's duo of Yoshihiro and Vinicius Rech.
A noteworthy detail: this doubles event corresponds to the U-13 category, so Andy is "battling" with older and more experienced players.