Sathiyan set to make WC debut

The Indian is in Group D along with France’s Gauzy and Denmark’s Groth

The 40th edition of the International Table Tennis Federation (ITTF) men’s World Cup begins on Friday, with G. Sathiyan, India’s top-ranked player, all set to make his tournament debut.

A total of 20 players will take part in the three-day event at the Sichuan Provincial Gymnasium in Chengdu, China.

The top eight seeds directly qualify for the knockout rounds, while the remaining 12 players have been drawn into groups of three for the preliminary round, with the top two players from each progressing to the knockouts.

Seeded 17th, Sathiyan is in Group D along with experienced campaigners in France’s Simon Gauzy and Denmark’s Jonathan Groth, the 12th and 14th seeds, respectively.

High on confidence

Sathiyan will be high on confidence after downing Tomokazu Harimoto in the team event of the Asian Championships in September and sparring with China’s Shen Yaohuan for a week in Chennai. On the other hand, Gauzy, making his fifth World Cup appearance, will look to better his best-ever quarterfinals finish in 2016. Groth is playing his second World Cup.

The final will take place on Sunday.

The top eight seeds: 1. Fan Zhendong (China), 2. Ma Long (China), 3. Tomokazu Harimoto (Japan), 4. Hugo Calderano (Brazil), 5. Timo Boll (Germany), 6. Mattias Falck (Sweden), 7. Lin Yun-Ju (Taipei), 8. Koki Niwa (Japan).

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