For the first time since 2011, there was no Cambodian national team player in the main draw as the third and final leg of the $10,000 ITF Cambodian Futures for the GLF Tep Khunnah Open got underway at the National Tennis Center yesterday.
Davis Cuppers Bun Kenny, Mam Phalkun and Long Samneang were among the six Cambodian first round casualties in the qualifying stage over the weekend.
The focus of first round attention was fifth seeded Ito Yuichi of Japan, who needed three sets to get the measure of Thailand’s Kittipong Wachiramanowong at 6-1, 4-6, 6-3.
The most flattering scoreline was produced by Chinese qualifier He Yecong, who dashed past wildcard entry Victor Gurevich of the US 6-1, 6-0.
With Lim Yong Kyu and Lee Duck Hee emerging winners of the first and second weeks of competition, South Korea is obviously enjoying a good run this year and qualifier Lee Jea Moon was the first of seven countrymen in the main draw to make the second round. He overcame another qualifier, Cao Zhaoyi of China, 6-4, 6-4.
Kazakhstan’s Timur Khabibulin got past Wang Chieu-Fu 6-4, 6-4 to be assured of at least one more ranking point to add to the one he picked up last week after beating Cambodia’s Bun Kenny in three sets.
Qualifier losses hit hard
Liu Shao Fan of Taiwan dashed Bun Kenny’s hopes of making it to the main draw by beating him 6-2, 7-5. Igor Zubov of Russia shot down Mam Phalkun 6-1, 6-0; Ning Yuging of China blanked out Long Samneang 6-0, 6-0; He Yecong was too good for Doeum Socheaphearun 6-0 6-1; Chiu Yu Hsiano of Taiwan downed Mam Vetu 6-1, 6-2; and Jose Fco Vidal Azorin of Spain sent out Our Sarith 6-0, 6-1.