There were not very many surprises on the first day of the 26th Brazil International Cup. Guatemala’s top singles player Kevin Cordon made it through his match without too many problems, winning over USA’s Sattawat Pongnairat 21-11, and 21-11. Ivan Sozonov, Guatemala International Men’s singles and Men’s doubles champion had quite a scare against Czech player Petr Koukal. The match went three games with Sozonov taking the final game 21-18.
Canada’s Olympic hopeful Stephan Wojcikiewicz overtook Brazilian star Daniel Paiola, 21-9, 21-15. And in the women’s singles, first seeded Susan Egelstaff had a frightening first round when Portugal’s Telma Santos forced a third game. The final scores were 21-23, 21-16, and 21-9 with Egelstaff taking the match and moving on to the next round. Michelle Li is looking at attempting to win her second tournament of the season with a first round win over Japan’s Ayumi Mine, 21-7, 21-18.
In the Men’s doubles, the top pairings from Canada, Austrailia, USA, and Brazil all made it past the first hurdle of this tournament. The women’s doubles provided even fewer surprises with the expected teams advancing onto the next round.
A big win in the mixed doubles for Peru’s young team of Mario Cuba and Lorena Duany came early on in the first round. They defeated Brazilian doubles sensation Hugo Arthuso, who paired up with Marina Eliezer in three games, 18-21, 21-13, and 21-10.
The twenty sixth Brasil International Cup is underway today, with some great players from Pan America as well as the world in attendance. Guatemala’s breakout star Kevin Cordon will be attempting to redeem himself after losing to Russia’s Vladmir Ivanoz in the semi-final of his home tournament, Guatemala International. Ivanoz is one of the three Russians in attendance of Brasil International, and they are no doubt the ones to beat in this tournament as Ivanoz and his partner Ivan Sozonov teamed up to win the Men’s doubles title in Guatemala, as well as facing off against each other in the Men’s singles final.
Meanwhile the women’s singles may be very unpredictable. Michelle Li of Canada is definitely the favourite after edging out Scotland’s top seeded Susan Egelstaff in the semi-final and Switzerland’s Jeanine Cicognini in the final to win the title last week in Guatemala.
The home country of Brazil definitely has the strongest numbers in this tourney. No surprise there. However a Brazilian duo to watch would definitely be 4th seeded Hugo Arthuso and Daniel Paiola. They reached the semi-final of Guatemala and now are prepared to go for their home title. They lost to Adrian Liu and Derrick Ng, Canada’s top doubles pair who fell to the Russian team of Ivanoz and Sozonoz in the final.
Matches to watch out for in the women’s doubles will mostly occur in the later rounds. A possible quarter final in the very bottom of the draw could have USA’s top team of Rena and Iris Wang clashing with one of Canada’s top teams Grace Gao and Joycelyn Ko. Gao will also be teaming up with usual partner Toby Ng, to take the top seeded position in the mixed doubles.
So far we are looking forward to a great tournament. A great concentration of North and South America’s finest as well as few top players from abroad.
As surprising as it was to see Joachim Persson through to the semi-finals with numerous victories along the way, the biggest surprise thus far came today when he defeated Peter Gade for the first time ever to book his place in the finals. Persson has struggled with injuries over the last couple years, and questions have been raised as to his ability to keep up with the best on the tour, however those questions have been put to rest with a 21-14, 16-21, 21-17 victory over the top seeded Gade. Persson now plays Taufik Hidayat who had a more straight forward victory over Boonsak Ponsana 21-13, 21-14.
The womens semi finals featured two China vs Thailand match ups, and the results were in China’s favour. Top seed Wang Yihan came through in three games over Porntip Buranaprasertsuk 21-12, 19-21, 21-10. Her compatriot Li Xuerui will be Wang’s opponent after her two game victory over Salakajit Ponsana 22-20, 21-13, ending the Ponsana family’s hopes of a title in Paris.
Germany will be happy with two pairs in the finals, one in the mens doubles, and the other in the mixed doubles. First up was the surprising upset of second seeds Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan to Ingo Kindervatter and Johannes Schöttler 13-21, 21-17, 22-20. The German pair will now play Denmark’s Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen who are appearing in their second consecutive super series final after defeating their compatriots Jonas Rasmussen and Mads Conrad-Petersen 21-23, 21-6, 21-16.
The next success for Germany came from Birgit Overzier and Michael Fuchs who won after Thomas Laybourn and Kamilla Rytter Juhl retired at 17-10 in the first game. The German pair now play Thailand’s Sudket Prapakamol and Saralee Thoungthongkam after they also benefited from a withdrawal against their compatriots Songphon Anugritayawon and Kunchala Voravichitchaikul.
Petya Nedelcheva and Anastasia Russkikh needed the longest match of the day to win their semi-final match against Denmark’s Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter-Juhl 18-21, 21-15, 21-16 in an hour and eleven minutes. They now face Thailand’s Duanganong Aroonkesorn and Kunchala Voravichitchaikul who had a fairly straight forward victory over Lena Frier Kristiansen and Maria Ropke winning 21-9, 21-15.
Perhaps the most interesting story of this French Super Series is the performance of Denmark’s Joachim Persson.
Persson has been pushed to the shadows in the last year or so as Jan Jorgensen and Viktor Axelsen have shown some substantial potential, however this week in Paris Persson seems to be reminding us that he still has the ability to threaten at these events. The left hander defeated China’s Du Pengyu in three exquisite games 21-17, 12-21, 21-19 to book his quarter-final place against his compatriot Peter Gade who struggled more than expected against German Marc Zwiebler. Gade won in three games as well 15-21, 21-12, 21-8. On the other side of the draw neither Boonsak Ponsana or Taufik Hidayat struggled against their opponents, Ajay Jayaram or Rajiv Ouseph respectively, as both won in straight games.
The big upset on the womens singles side came at the expense of Tine Baun when the second seeded Dane fell to China’s Li Xuerui 21-16, 21-17. Li will now play Salakajit Ponsana who defeated China’s Liu Xin. England’s Elizabeth Cann failed to continue her surprising run when she lost to Thailand’s Porntip Buranaprasertsuk 21-15, 21-18 who will now play Wang Yihan. Wang crushed her Russian opponent Ella Diehl 21-8, 21-8.
The mens doubles is looking like we will see a repeat of last week’s final. Boe and Mogensen made it one step closer to the final by defeating Flandy Limpele and Simon Mollyhus 21-16, 21-18. In the semi-finals they will face another Danish pair after Jonas Rasmussen and his new partner Mads Conrad-Petersen defeated England’s Chris Adcock and Andrew Ellis 23-25, 22-20, 21-14. The most surprising semi-finalists are Germans Ingo Kindervatter and Johannes Schöttler who defeated their Malaysian opponents Fairuzizuan Mohd Tazari Mohd and Ong Soon Hock in two close games 22-20, 21-18. They will face Indonesia’s Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan who narrowly defeated Malaysia’s Gan Teik Chai and Tan Bin Shen 14-21, 21-18, 21-17.
A couple of walkovers marred the womens doubles quarter-finals as Duanganong Aroonkesorn and Kunchala Voravichitchaikul from Thailand and Lena Frier Kristiansen and Maria Ropke from Denmark booked their places against one another without a shuttle being hit. On the other side of the draw we have yet another Danish pair through to the semi-finals after Kamilla Rytter Juhl and Christinna Pedersen defeated Heather Olver and Mariana Agathangelou 21-19, 21-11. The Danish pair will now play Petya Nedelcheva and Anastasia Russkikh.
Finally in the mixed doubles there were no easy matches for our semi-finalists. All the matches were closely contested, perhaps the most intense was Thomas Laybourn and Kamilla Rytter Juhl’s victory over Hendra Setiawan and Anastasia Russkikh. The Danes need three games and extra points to win 23-21, 15-21, 27-25 and next they’ll play surprise semi-finalists Michael Fuchs and Birgit Overzier who knocked out top seeds Hendra Gunawan and Vita Marissa 16-21, 21-9, 21-16. The other half of the draw features an all Thailand showdown between Voravichitchaikul and Anugritayawon and their opponents Thoungthongkam and Prapakamol.
Yesterday saw just one seed crash out, today was the complete opposite with seeds toppling on an hourly basis through the day. France’s interest in their home Super Series is overly before the weekend begins, whilst Peter Gade goes from strength to strength after his back injury.
Gade, the top seed in the singles has safely progressed into the quarter finals tomorrow after a two game win over Christian Lind Thomsen and will play the 6th seeded Marc Zwiebler on the TV court on Friday evening. The other Dane in the draw is Joachim Persson, the 8th seeded also came through his all-Danish encounter in a tight two game match and will play China’s Du Pengyu. The unseeded Chinese player has already beaten two Danes on route to the last 8, defeating Viktor Axelsen in Round 1 and last week’s winner Jan O Jorgensen in the second round also. Ajay Jayaram has also reached the last 8, defeating the 7th seeded Dicky Palyama in three games to book his place against Boonsak Ponsana, the 3rd seed.
The seed total in the women’s singles was halved on day 2, with Pi Hongyan crashing out to Elizabeth Cann in a tame two game defeat. Liu Xin continues her excellent run of results with another impressive victory, this time over Juliane Schenk, the 5th seed. Salakjit Ponsana is another player in a rich vein of form, defeating the 4th seeded Yao Jie in a two game victory. Tine Baun has been impressed also, with a two game victory over Jeanine Cicognini.
Four seeds remain in the men’s doubles, with the top seeds Boe and Mogensen taken to three games by Goh and Teo of Malaysia. The 5th seeds Conrad-Pedersen and Rasmussen as well as the 2nd seeded Kido and Setiawan were also taken to three games as many of the seeds still remaining in the draw have been taken the distance. Only the 6th seeded Gan and Tan of Malaysia have progressed safely, with back to back two game victories.
The women’s doubles lost 5 of it’s 8 seeds today, with only the top 3 seeds remaining in the draw. The 6th seeded French pair of Choinet and Rasadi lost out to Lee and Obanana of the USA in three games to end the local interest in the women’s doubles. The top seeds Nedelcheva and Russkikh are safely into the last 8 with a two game win over Fontaine and Palermo of France.
Only one seed crashed out of the mixed doubles, 5th seeded Fischer Nielsen and Pedersen lost out in three games to the pairing of Setiawan and Russkikh, who are both seeded in their respective level doubles events. They take on another Danish pair tomorrow as they take on last weeks winners, Laybourn and Rytter Juhl, the 3rd seeds.
The day begun with optimism that Peter Gade could take his 4th Denmark Open title, only for the top seed to pull out with a back injury that plagued his previous week of training. There are three Danes into the last 16, Joachim Persson produced an excellent two game win over Carl Baxter and the home crowd has it’s dream second round encounter as Jan O Jorgensen will take on Viktor Axelsen after both recorded first round wins. The match will take place tomorrow night at 7.10 local time as Axelsen hopes to defeat Jorgensen just as Jorgensen defeated Gade in last years event.
There were wins for the 2nd seed Taufik Hidayat over Danish qualifier Emil Vind as well as 3rd seeded Boonsak Ponsana, who edged out Kazushi Yamada in three games. Last weeks Dutch Open winner Sho Sasaki is through to the second round and faces an all-Japanese match against the 5th seeded Kenichi Tago.
The women’s singles has had it’s fair share of shocks today, top seeded Wang Yihan lost her opening game against Jeanine Cicognini before progressing in three games. 3rd seeded Pi Hongyan was not as fortunate as she crashed out to Petya Nedelcheva in two games whilst 6th seeded Juliane Schenk lost her opening game to Sayaka Sato before winning the next two to progress into the last 16.
Denmark has the guarantee of at least one pair in the men’s doubles quarter final, as Boe and Mogensen take on Bonde and Kristiansen after both pairs come through their opening round matches in two games. Japan are well represented in the draw, just like last week in the Dutch Open. 4th seeded Hashimoto and Hirata as well as 8th seeded Endo and Hayakawa progressed safely into the last 16 and are joined by qualifiers Hirobe and Kazuno after a three game victory.
Four of the last 16 couples in the women’s doubles are also Japanese with the host nation only managing three couples into the second round. All eight seeded pairs who had an opening round match safely progressed in two games apart from the 3rd seeded Nedelcheva and Russkikh and 7th seeded Jonathans and Van Dooremalen who needed three games to progress into the second round.
Top seeded Mateusiak and Zieba survived their opening round scare against Setiawan and Russkikh, eventually progressing in three games. Both of Denmark’s seeded pairings are also safely into round 2, Fischer and Pedersen coming through a tight two game match whilst Laybourn and Rytter Juhl were taken to three games by the Russian pairing of Nikolaenko and Sorokina, who won the Dutch Open last week.
The upsets continue in the womens singles with both the first and second seeds falling at the quarter-finals stage. It started with first seeded Nicole Grether falling to Oka Hitomi in three close games 18-21, 21-16, 21-15. Next was the Canadian youngster Michelle Li upsetting veteran Swiss shuttler Jeanine Cicognini in a thriller 17-21, 21-19, 21-19. Cicognini had the advantage at the end of the match, but Li managed to turn the tide at the very end to win.
The only upset on paper to happen in the mens singles was the loss of Daniel Paiola of Brazil to local hopeful David Snider, however based on the performance from Snider it appeared that Paiola was outclassed the entire time losing in two quick games 21-8, 21-14. Top seeded Brice Leverdez struggled to take his quarter-final match against Canada’s Dan Kai. The French player had to fight back from one game down to force a third game. Trailing 13-15 he quickly shifted the momentum taking seven straight points before winning the third game and taking the match 19-21, 21-13, 21-18.
All was well in the mens doubles for the seeds as all four of the seeds remain heading into the semi-final stage. Dutch pair Ruud Bosch and Roen Kidder won easily over Canadian champions Jon Vandervet and Alvin Lau 21-15, 21-13 to set up their next match against recent Peru International champions Adrian Liu and Derrick Ng who also had a fairly straightforward win over Darren Hong and Kevin Li also of Canada. The bottom half of the draw is composed of Maxime Belanger and Francois Champagne taking on former world champion Halim Haryanto, and Phillip Chew his junior partner, both representing the USA.
The womens doubles top seeds Nicole Grether and Charmaine Reid booked their semi-final place after a solid performance against Canadian champions Xuelian Jiang and Melody Liang winning 21-18, 21-18. They will now face Japan’s Ito Kana and Oka Hitomi who defeated Canada’s Stephanie Ko and Phyllis Chan 21-10, 23-21. Second seeded Peruvians Christina Aicardi and Claudia Rivero to defeat their American opponents Priscilla Lun and Paula Obañana, but pulled out the win 21-16, 11-21, 21-17 to set up their semi-final match up against Ruilin Guang and Yee Theng Lim.
The last event of the day was the mixed doubles which is guaranteed to have a local champion as all four remaining pairs are Canadian. First up Toby Ng and Grace Gao avenged their upset at the nationals when they easily defeated Francois Bourret and Florence Lavoie 21-17, 21-7. They will face Alex Bruce and Kevin Li in their semi-final match tomorrow. National champions Jon Vandervet and Milaine Cloutier had a battle to book their semi-final place when they defeated American pairing Nicholas Jinadasa and Paula Obañana 17-21, 21-13, 21-17 and now face Derrick Ng and Xuelian Jiang.
Matches start tomorrow at 5pm
The women’s singles provided two of the biggest upsets of the day, the biggest of which was third seed Anna Rice falling to the unseeded Wang Linling. The match was very up and down with Wang winning in three games 21-15, 6-21. 21-9. The other big surprise in the women’s singles was the defeat of Christina Aicardi from Peru to Canadian Denyse Julien. The 49 year old proved once again that she is not to be underestimated as she won in three long games 21-14, 21-23, 21-18. The two big matches to watch tomorrow will likely be Nicole Grether from Germany taking on Japan’s Oka Hitomi, and Michelle Li from Canada taking on Jeanine Cicognini from Switzerland.
The men’s singles lacked any major upsets in spite of Dan Kai from Canada easily defeating USA’s Nicholas Jinadasa, and Ikeda Yuichi of Japan’s similarly easy win over Canada’s Alex Pang. Both were upsets on paper, but there was no doubt who the stronger players were in those matches today. Other than Dan Kai Canada has two other hopefuls remaining at the quarter-final stage with Stephan Wojcikiewicz winning over Timothy Ma, and David Snider pulling out a great performance against Malaysia’s Lee Hock Lai winning 21-17, 14-21, 21-18. They will now meet Daniel Paiola and Kristian Midtgaard respectively.
The only doubles event to take to the courts today was the men’s doubles event as both the womens doubles and mixed doubles events will be starting their first rounds tomorrow. There were a handful of close matches, perhaps the most surprising of which was recent Canadian national champions Jon Vandervet and Alvin Lau narrowly escaping defeat against the pick-up pair of Daniel Pastewka and Tommy McKee. After splitting the first two games Lau and Vandervet trailed by ten points in the final game, but managed to comeback and take the match 18-21, 21-11, 23-21.
Tomorrow will feature some more exciting matches and we can expect some more seeds to start falling so check back in for more results soon.
Bao Chunlai continues his domination with another impressive two game victory, this time over Tan Chun Seang of Malaysia, 21-13, 21-7 to book his place in tomorrow’s semi final. He will play Wong Choong Hann, the 3rd seed from Malaysia is his opponent in the semi final after defeating the 6th seed in Dicky Palyama in three games, 15-21, 21-13, 21-17. The German interest in the singles ended today, with 4th Marc Zweibler losing out to the 8th seeded Hashim Muhammad Hafiz in two games, 21-12, 21-16. Chen Long is his semi-final opponent after defeating Wong Wing Ki in two games, 21-18, 21-15.
Wang Lin is through to the semi final after defeating Jeanine Cicognini 21-12, 21-14. The Chinese top seed will play the final German left in the competition, the 3rd seed Juliane Schenk. The 3rd seed has failed to drop a game en route to the semi final and will play the Chinese top seed in Wang Lin. Wang Xin, the second seed is also through after a scare against Wong Mew Choo, the 6th seed from Malaysia. Wang Xin going through 21-13, 20-22, 21-13 and will play Chan Tsz Ka of Hong Kong in the semi final after she defeated Tse Ting Suet 22-20, 21-18.
In the doubles events, the Chinese pairs have dominated play. Tao and Zhang are through to the mixed doubles semi final; the fours seeds in the women’s doubles are through including the top two seeds from China. Blair and Bankier are making a return after Bankier’s injury last year, they have reached the semi final and will play Tao and Zhang of China in the last 4.
The first round of the Austrian International began this afternoon, after a morning of qualification to determine the final players entered into the main draw. The mixed doubles was the first on court, and it didn’t take long to lose one of the seeds, Claes and Descamps of Belgium (seeded 4). The remaining 7 seeds safely progressed into round 2. The Belgians had reason to celebrate soon after, with Lianne Tan taking out the 6th seeded Jeanine Cicognini of Switzerland in the opening round of the women’s singles. The other 7 seeds safely progressing into tomorrow’s second round.
The men’s singles was less than clear-cut, with two seeds falling in the opening round and several other seeds being taken the full distance. Anand Pawar survived a very tight match with Pavel Florian of the Czech Republic, winning the third game 26-24. For other seeds, their chances of progressing didn’t last until a 3rd game, with 4th seeded Christian Lind Thomsen crashing out to Petr Koukal of the Czech Republic 21-19, 21-11. At the same time, 7th seeded Dmytro Zavadsky crashed out to unseeded Scottish player Kieran Merrilees. The Scot winning 21-17, 15-21, 21-13 to progress into round 2.
The men’s doubles saw top seeded local pair of Koch and Zauner fall to unseeded Russian duo of Ashmarin and Ivanov. Tomorrow sees the compeititon topple in size, with an all-Russian affair in the women’s singles as Tatjana Bibik playing Anastasia Prokopenko who both won their singles in the European Team Final over Denmark.
Kieran Merrilees reward for beating 7th seeded Zavadsky is a match against Yuhan Tan of Belgium; as for Petr Koukal he plays Simon Maunoury of France.