The first morning at the All England saw seeds tumble on a regular basis before the afternoon brought the best players in the world show to off their ability. However, play ended with the biggest shock of the day with the defeat of Taufik Hidayat.
World championship quarter finalist Kazushi Yamada crushed the 2nd seeded Hidayat in a one-sided 21-14, 21-10 victory that took just over 30 minutes and opened the bottom half of the draw for the likes of Lin Dan to capitalize on. The Chinese have a strong showing with six players in the last 16 and the biggest name of them all is safely into the second round as Lin Dan progressed to set up a second round match against Rumbaka of Indonesia. Last years beaten finalist Kenichi Tago takes on last years semi finalist in Peter Gade in the second round this year, both progressing without difficulty today.
Lee Chong Wei was in superb form to set up a tough second round match against the 4th of last years semi finalists in Bao Chunlai, with the Chinese player impressive in his 21-10, 21-6 win over Sony Kuncoro in his opening round match. The Danish presence in the draw is down to just the 4th seeded Gade, with Jan O Jorgensen and Joachim Persson both crashing out on the opening day. World champion Chen Jin survived a tough opening game against Rajiv Ouseph before cruising to a 2 game victory and a second round match against Germany’s Marc Zwiebler. Continue reading »
Continue reading »
The recent decision from the Chinese to try out new partnerships has caused havoc throughout the three doubles events, leading to some of the top players in the world going into tournaments unseeded. Yu and Wang in the women’s doubles are used to being seeded in the top 3 of the event but fine themselves in the lottery of the unseeded players in who they match up with in the opening round.
The men’s singles does offer some sense of normality, with all of the 7 seeds progressing into the second round. Lin Dan safely disposed of Jan O Jorgensen in the opening round in two games, whilst 6th seeded Boonsak Ponsana narrowed scraped through against Chinese qualifier Wen Kai in three games. Lee Chong Wei and Chen Jin are still on route to meet in the last 8, with both coming through their first round matches in two games. Taufik Hidayat is also through to round 2 after an impressive win over Du Pengyu in his first match of the week.
The ladies singles was also a similar story, with all the seeds progressing except the 8th seed Ella Diehl who suffered her second opening round defeat in two weeks, this time losing out to Inthanon Ratchanok of Indonesia in three games. The fall of last year’s world champion Lu Lan has never been more evident than over the past two weeks, losing to Inthanon Ratchanok in China last week and this week a first round exit to Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei in two games, who will now take on top seed Wang Xin in the second round. Saina Nehwal returned to Super Series action with a comfortable two game win and will have a much harder test in Round 2 against Salakjit Ponsana.
Lee and Fang, seeded 4 crashed out to the 2005 world champions, Bach and Gunawan in their opening round matchup in two games but were not the only seed to crash out in the opening round. Another Chinese Taipei pair, Chen and Lin also lost in the first round. Chai and Guo of China defeating the 8th seeds in two games to book their place in the second round. There was little trouble for the top seeds in the men’s doubles, #1 seeds Koo and Tan progressed easily with a two game victory and the 2nd seeded Kido and Setiawan joined the top seeds in the second round with their own two game victory.
Only 6 seeds progressed in the women’s singles, with the 8th seeded Ha and Jung as well as 7th seeded Zhang and Zhang crashed out in the first round. The match of the day tomorrow will undoubtably be the second round match between Zhao and Cheng who take on the unseeded Chinese pair of Wang and Yu as this match could easily be a matchup in a final in 2011 should the two partnerships stick together into next year.
Half of the seeds in the mixed doubles lost in their opening round matchups, some due to new Chinese partnerships whilst others were disappointing performances from the higher ranked partnership. 4th seeded Robertson and Wallwork crashed out to Yoo and Kim of Korea in three games, 7th seeded Voravichitchaikul and Anugritayawon of Thailand lost out to the new Chinese pairing of Xu and Yu in a tight three game match. 3rd seeded Thoungthongkam and Prapakamol were defeated in impressive fashion by He and Ma of Chinese and the 2nd seeded Marissa and Gunawan lost to Malaysians Chan and Goh in three games. The top seeded Mateusiak and Zieba take on last weeks winning pair Jiaming and Tian in their second round match to test their title credentials tomorrow.
Even without Gade or Baun picking up a title last week in Odense, Danish badminton is on a real high after their trio of titles. Jan O Jorgensen proved his credentials as a Super Series winner and the teenage sensation Viktor Axelsen breezed through the qualifying rounds to add another Danish contender in the biggest events for years to come.
Peter Gade returns to action this week, or he will at least try on Wednesday. He is unsure himself about the level of his play going into tomorrow’s opener against Carl Baxter. Last week’s winner Jan O Jorgensen takes on Przemyslaw Wacha in a tough opening round match and could face another rematch with Viktor Axelsen in the second round, however the 16-year old faces the tough task of defeating Du Pengyu of China in his opening round match. 2nd seeded Taufik Hidayat also starts with a tough opening round match against Wang Zhengming, the Chinese qualifier.
Pi Honygan will be under similar pressure as when the World Championships were held in August with a nations expectation on her shoulders. Chinese Taipei’s Tai Tzu Ying is the French 3rd seeded first round opponent on the show court on Wednesday afternoon. Wang Yihan continues to play whilst most of the Chinese squad have opted not to play in Europe this month, she takes on Marie Maunoury of France who came through the qualifiers to reach the main draw. Tine Baun will want to put last week’s disappointment behind her with a strong performance this week, she starts her campaign against Elena Prus of Ukraine.
Last weeks winners of the men’s doubles, Boe and Mogensen look to continue their excellent run of form this week, they take on the French pairing of Careme and Grosjean in their opening round match. Last week’s runners-up will hope to go one better as Kido and Setiawan start their campaign against the Dutch pairing of Bosch and Ridder.
The Japanese contingent that has been progressing deep into tournaments has chosen not to play in France this week, leaving the door open for last weeks runners-up, Vislova and Sorokina to go one better this week. The seeds for the women’s doubles have a European look to them, with 7 of the 8 seeds coming from a European nation.
One big name pairing who are playing this week are the top seeds in the mixed doubles, Marissa and Gunawan of Indonesia. They start with a tough opener against Durkin and Vislova of Russia. Last weeks winners Laybourn and Rytter Juhl start against the American pair of Lee and Ho whilst last weeks runners-up Robertson and Wallwork start against Moren and Pocztowiak of Poland in their opener.
After a long road and lots of badminton the big winners at the 2010 Commonwealth Games were Malaysia and hosts India. While these two teams were the gold and silver medalists respectively in the team event, they split the individual golds 3-2. First off in the mixed doubles Malaysian super star Koo Kien Keat would win his first gold of the tournament along with partner Chin Eei Hui. The Malaysian pair defeated England’s Nathan Robertson and Jenny Wallwork 22-20, 21-12. Next would be India’s turn to win their first badminton gold of the tournament. Jwalla Gutta and Ashwini Ponnapa took on Singapore’s Yao Lei and Shinta Mulia Sari and won in two relatively close games 21-16, 21-19.
In spite of Rajiv Ouseph’s strong ability as a mens singles player he was far outclassed when Lee Chong Wei proved once again why he is the number one ranked player in the world. The domineering Malaysian destroyed Ouseph in two fast games 21-8, 21-10 to win his second consecutive Commonwealth Games title.
In the men’s doubles Koo Kien Keat would yet again dash Nathan Robertson’s hopes of a gold medal. Koo partnered with Tan Boon Heong to defeat Robertson and his partner Anthony Clark 21-19, 21-14.
Finally the highlight match of the day for the home crowd was their favourite player Saina Nehwal’s match against Malaysian Wong Mew Choo. Saina was close to being defeated after losing the first game 19-21, and was forced to pull out a close second game 22-20. Saina took the match in the end by winning the third game 21-13 and won her first Commonwealth Games gold medal.
Lee Chong Wei has successfully negotiated the early rounds and defeated the two seeds in his half of the draw in the quarters, then defeating Chetan Anand in the semi finals to set up the gold medal match against England’s Rajiv Ouseph who defeated another Indian in the 5th seeded Parupalli to set up Thursday’s final.
India’s big hope for gold comes from Saina Nehwal, as she successfully progressed into Thursday’s final after beating Scotland’s Susan Egelstaff in the semi final in two games to set up a gold medal match against Mew Choo Wong of Malaysia. The 2nd seed defeated England’s Elizabeth Cann in three games to book her place in Thursday’s final. Cann will take on Egelstaff tomorrow in a rematch of their 2006 bronze medal match for a chance of a medal in 2010.
Top seeds Koo and Tan of Malaysia are through to Thursday’s final against the 2nd seeded English pair of Nathan Robertson and Anthony Clark. The top seeded Malaysians have failed to drop a game on route to the final whilst the English pair had to come through a tight three game match over Triyacha and Wong of Singapore.
India has a second chance of gold in the women’s doubles, with 2nd seeds Gutta and Machiman progressing to Thursday’s final against Singapore’s top seed Sari and Yao, who defeated the 3rd seeded English pair of Wallwork and White in two games to book their place in the gold medal match on Thursday.
Nathan Robertson’s second chance at gold is also Koo Kien Keat’s second chance also as the pair match up in the mixed doubles final also. Top seeded Robertson partners Jenny Wallwork against the unseeded Malaysian pair of Koo and Chin, who have partnered up just for the Commonwealth Games. They defeated the 2nd seeded Gutta and Valiya in the quarter finals and then 3rd seeded Triyacha and Yao of Singapore in the semi finals.
While hardly a huge surprise it was nonetheless a weight lifted off of the Malaysia team’s shoulders today when they secured yet another team event gold medal. Looking back on the history of the games we see only England and Malaysia have ever taken the team title.
The event started out with Malaysia’s doubles super star Koo Kien Keat partnering up with Chin Ee Hui in the mixed doubles against Jwala Gutta and Diju Valiya Veetil. This was an important match for Malaysia to win since their strength lies in their men’s team, and a loss in the mixed would put them in serious danger. However, in spite of going to three games the Malaysian pair managed to pull out the win 21-14, 10-21, 21-10 to secure the first point in the tie.
Perhaps the most assured win for Malaysia would come from the men’s singles with world number 1 Lee Chong Wei taking on Kashyap Parupalli. A surprising choice by the India team to field Parupalli as he is India’s third ranked singles player behind both Chetan Anand and Arvind Bhat at number 32 in the world. Regardless the Indian shuttler faired well against Lee in the first game posting a 21-18 score and seemed a legitimate threat. However, in the second game he failed to maintain the same pressure and was easily disposed of 21-7 putting Malaysia up 2-0 in the tie.
The only loss of the day came at the hands of India’s superstar women’s singles player Saina Nehwal who also happens to be the tournaments top seed in the individual event. Saina faced off against Wong Mew Choo who managed to sneak out a close first game 26-24. It was a good start for the Malaysian but Saina managed to pull things back in her favour in the second 21-17 to set up a final deciding game. This also went in the Indian’s favour as she went on to win the match, and India’s first point in the tie, 24-26, 21-17, 21-14.
To seal victory Malaysia brought out more of their superstars as world number one men’s doubles pairing Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong took to the court against Thomas Sanava and Rupesh Kumar. The Indian pairing are strong players in their own right, but they were no match for Koo and Tan who won the match 21-12, 21-19 to win Malaysian second consecutive team gold in the Commonwealth Games.
In the bronze medal match England defeated Singapore 3-1 with two of their points coming from victories by Nathan Robertson in the mens doubles and mixed doubles.
Stay tuned here for more reports as we start the individual events.
Another day and another few seeds crash out early. Sony Kuncoro’s withdrawal was old news but the match that he was supposed to play was scheduled for today, meaning the definite end for the 8th seed. He wasn’t the only seed to not see the last 16 as Jan Jorgensen’s poor form in 2010 saw him crash out to Rajiv Ouspeh of England in two games.
Ouseph’s win sets up a last 16 encounter with top seed Lee Chong Wei, who came through his all-Malaysia encounter with unseeded Muhammad Hafiz Hashim, winning 21-16, 21-16. The 12th seeded Kenichi Tago was also defeated today, losing to Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk of Thailand in two tight games and sets up a last 16 match with the 5th seeded Taufik Hidayat who came through his match with Hsieh Yu Hsin in three games.
Lin Dan and Bao Chunlai had little trouble in setting up one of the best matches of the third round tomorrow, both comfortably winning in two games. The last round of 16 match in the top half sees 7th seeded Tien Minh Nguyen take on the 13th seeded Park Sung Hwan of Korea after the pair also won their second round matches in two games.
Chen Yong Zhao Ashton of Singapore is the unlikely story of the event, defeating Stephan Wojcikiewicz in his second round match to set up a third round encounter with 4th seeded Chen Jin, after he defeated another European to book his place in the last 16, beating Kestutis Navickas of Lithuania 21-16, 21-16 and will play Chen in tomorrow for a place in the quarter finals.
Boonsak Ponsana, the 9th seed defeated England’s Carl Baxter and plays Hsueh Hsuan Yi who was scheduled to play the 8th seeded Simon Santoso, only for the Indonesian player to pull out; leaving Hidayat as their best chance of success. Kazuski Yamada in into tomorrow’s third round after the Japanese player defeated 16th seeded Wong Choong Hann in three games and will take on Dicky Palyama of Holland after a two game victory over Misha Zilberman.
The final match of the last 16 is a rematch of the European Championship semi final, between Marc Zwiebler seeded 15 and Peter Gade, the second seed. Gade was on court for 74 minutes to fend off Shon Wan Ho of Korea in three games whilst Zwiebler defeated his Spanish opponent Pablo Abian in two games.
The bottom half of the women’s singles played their 2nd round matches today, without the loss of a seed in the entire half of the draw except for Zhou Mi who withdrew pre-event. Only Ai Goto remains unseeded in the lower half, defeating Linda Zechiri of Bulgaria 21-8, 21-10 to book her place in the last 16 against Wang Xin of China, the 3rd seed.
Pi Hongyan is France’s best chance of a title this week and started with an impressive 21-8, 21-8 win over Elena Prus of Ukraine. She takes on the 16th seed Kim Moon Hi of Korea, who came through her match in three games. Saina Nehwal had to come from a game down to progress into the 3rd round, eventually winning 20-22, 21-15, 21-8 over Chen Hsiao Huan of Chinese Taipei. Newhal takes on Russia’s 13th seed, Ella Diehl.
The bottom half of the men’s doubles played their second round matches, with Clark and Robertson continuing their excellent from with another two game win to set up a third round match against Cai and Fu of China after their two game win also today. 3rd seeded Boe and Mogensen safely progressed into the last 16 with a two game win over fellow Danes Faust and Kristiansen to set up a match with Ko and Yoo of Korea, seeded 13.
Kido and Setiawan had to work hard against Poland’s Cwalina and Logosz to set up an all-Indonesia third round match with Dasuki and Sukmawan.The final match from the bottom half sees 6th seeded Fang and Lee of Chinese Taipei take on Hashimoto and Hirata of Japan, seeded 11. Fang and Lee winning easily in two games whilst the Japanese pair were taken to three games by Malaysia’s Gan and Tan.
Just like in the women’s singles, 7 seeds remain from the 8 that started in the bottom half of the draw. Mason and Bankier defeated the 13th seeds in their opening round but lost out to Van Dooremalen and Jonathans of Holland in their second round game in two games, who will take on the 3rd seeded Cheng and Chien of Chinese Taipei in Round 3.
Du and Yu, China’s second seeds defeated French pairing Fontaine and Luttmann in their opening match of the championships in two games to set up a match with the 15th seeded Matsuo and Naito whose 21-0, 21-8 win over Virta and Rautala was perhaps the most impressive performance of the week to date.
There were also impressive wins for Sorokina and Vislova over another French pair of Chanteur and Matias, the 12th seeds winning 21-8, 21-7 to set up a third round match with Hyun and Jung of Korea who were a game up over Gao and Ko of Canada when the pair retired.
Lee and Lee finally ended the questions over their fitness with a two game win in their opening match, they will play Lee and Chien of Chinese Taipei tomorrow in their last 16 match. There were also wins for Gunawan and Marissa who had to come back from a game down against South Africa’s James and Edwards in what would have been one of the shocks of the week.
The world championships begun their campaign with a tough two game encounter, setting Laybourn and Rytter Juhl with a third round match with Robertson and Wallwork of England, the 15th seeds. All 8 seeds on the bottom of half of the mixed doubles are still in the event.