Han, Miao overcome preliminaries

Australian Justin Han is through the preliminary round of the men's table tennis.
Australian Justin Han is through the preliminary round of the men's table tennis. Getty Images Sport - Feng Li

JUSTIN Han has progressed through the preliminary round of the men's table tennis competition with a six set win over Mawussi Agbetoglo of Togo.

Han progressed with a six set win over Mawussi Agbetoglo of Togo - 9-11, 11-7, 11-1, 8-11, 11-8, 11-9 - and will play later today against Noshad Alamiyan of Iran.

The 20-year-old Han started slowly, splitting the opening two sets.

He then hit his stride, racing to a 10-0 lead in the third set.

After closing the set out, Han surprisingly dropped the fourth set before regrouping to finish out the contest.

The Olympic debutant admitted he battled nerves in his opening encounter.

"I was very nervous at the start but the first two sets I got better," Han said.

"This is my first Olympic Games and I wanted to get through the first match.


Han received some timely advice from teammate and triple Olympian William Henzell en route to the venue.

"William has a lot of experience and coming in on the bus he gave me some advice on how to play in the first match," Han said.

Han will face a tough task against Alamiyan, who is rated as the Middle East's best player.

But Han will be preparing well ahead of the clash.

"I will talk to (Jens Lang) my coach and rest back at the Village before playing my next match."

Miao Miao kicked off her fourth Olympic campaign by upsetting Dana Hadacova from the Czech Republic in six sets.

Hadacova is ranked over 100 places higher than Miao, but the diminutive Australian was in control for most of the contest, winning 11-8, 11-9, 6-11, 7-11, 11-7, 11-7.

Miao was determined to repay the support she received both at the arena and from the 400 plus Australian team.

"I have had so much support from the big Australian team, with all the athletes supporting each other," Miao said.

"I tried really hard to show them (I appreciated the support).


Despite the gap in the rankings, Miao was confident she could win.

"She is a strong European player, a professional," Miao said.

"I am really happy with my performance. I was prepared for a difficult game.


Making the win even more special was the fact Miao's parents had travelled from home to watch her play.

"My parents are here. My dad is my personal coach and mum is here too. It's a long way for them to come from Australia," she said


Miao will face Yi-Hua Yiang from Chinese Taipei in the second round later on Saturday.

Topics:  london olympics

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