Team Singapore

S'pore paddler Izaac Quek wins first ITTF World Junior singles title

Singaporean teen paddler Izaac Quek won his first singles title on the ITTF (International Table Tennis Federation) World Junior Circuit at the Swedish Junior and Cadet Open in Orebro last weekend.

The 13-year-old won the cadet boys' singles event, beating Canada's Simeon Martin 11-8, 11-9, 11-8 in the final.

The world No. 4 in the Under-15 boys world rankings did not drop a game in the tournament, dispatching France's Sohan Gilles (11-3, 11-5, 11-6), England's Conor Green (12-10, 11-5, 14-12) and Puerto Rico's Oscar Birriel (11-8, 11-9, 11-6) in the earlier rounds.

Izaac told the ITTF website: "I'm very happy, this is my first victory on the ITTF World Junior Circuit.

"It was difficult to win and I had to work hard, but I won all matches 3-0.

"I have improved a lot lately and in this tournament my forehand drive was much better.

"I practise five hours a day, six days a week."

This is not the teen's first win on the junior circuit. Last October, he teamed up with Romanian Elena Zaharia to take home the mixed doubles title at the ITTF World Cadet Challenge in Poland.

Izaac was earmarked for big things, having received the Singapore Table Tennis Association (STTA) Hopes Player of the Year award for paddlers aged 12 and below last November.

Last month, the STTA drafted Izaac into the national intermediate squad.

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