After a long week and some hard fought battles Lithuanian Kestutsis Navickas is the champion of the Atwater International 2010. In spite of the relatively straight forward scores he had throughout the tournament Navickas fought very hard powering his way through his matches by virtue of his gritty play, fighting harder than all of his opponents. His final match against France’s Brice Leverdez was his most challenging of the week, and the only match to go three games with Navickas winning 21-16, 18-21, 21-14.
Canada’s Wunderkind Michelle Li seemed poised for her first international title, but it wasn’t to be as her second Japanese opponent was able to just sneak past her in the end. Oka Hitomi would be the second consecutive Japanese shuttler to dash Li’s hopes in a thrilling three game win 15-21, 21-12, 23-21.
Dutchmen Ruud Bosch and Koen Ridder were dominant all week in Montreal, and the finals were no different. They made their way to the finals without dropping a game, and American pair Halim Haryanto and Phillip Chew would be no different losing 21-13, 21-10. The women’s doubles was unfortunately a default victory for Charmaine Reid and Nicole Grether as Huang Ruilin and Lim Yee Theng were unable to play.
Perhaps the most impressive match of the day was the sibling rivalry in the mixed doubles between Derrick and Toby Ng. The two brothers faced off for family pride, but it was Toby and his partner Grace Gao taking the title in a nailbiter over Derrick and Jiang Xuelian 21-18, 20-22, 26-24. No doubt the Ng household has much to be proud of these past few weeks with Derrick’s recent victory in Peru with doubles partner Adrian Liu.
For her second consecutive international tournament Canada’s Michelle Li has booked herself a final. Japan’s Ito Kana fought hard, but it wasn’t enough as Li won the match in three games 13-21, 21-14, 21-13 to set up an encounter against Ito’s teammate Oka Hitomi who defeated Charmaine Reid 21-15, 21-6 in the other semi-final. Li has yet to win an international event, but this could be her best chance yet.
Canada had two hopefuls in the mens singles as well, unfortunately neither produced as David Snider fell in three close games to Brice Leverdez 21-11, 15-21, 21-15, and Stephan Wojcikiewicz lost to Lithuanian Kestutsis Navickas 21-12, 21-13. The Snider-Leverdez match was an extremely entertaining battle, unfortunately for the Canadian he was unable to keep it close going into the final few points.
As in the men’s singles, the men’s doubles final will feature no Canadian participants and instead will have a Dutch pair, and an American pair facing off for the title. Top seeds Ruud Bosch and Koen Ridder defeated the recent Peru International champions Derrick Ng and Adrian Liu 21-15, 21-15 to solidify their top seeding, and tomorrow will face off against America’s Halim Haryanto and Phillip Chew who defeated Canada’s Maxime Belanger and Francois Bourret 21-11, 21-10.
Top seeds Nicole Grether and Charmaine Reid did well to fend off the challenge from Japan’s Ito Kana and Oka Hitomi in three close games 21-18, 19-21, 21-14. Their opponents in the final will be another Canadian hybrid team after Huang Ruilin of Canada and Lim Yee Theng from Malaysia defeated second seeded Peruvians Christina Aicardia and Claudia Rivero in two straight games 21-13, 21-17.
It’s a sibling rivalry in the mixed doubles as Toby Ng takes on his brother Derrick Ng. Toby and his partner Grace Gao took their semi-final match against Kevin Li and Alex Bruce in two straight 21-12, 21-18. Derrick partnered with Jiang Xuelian to knock out Canadian national champions Jon Vandervet and Milaine Cloutier in three games 21-18, 20-22, 21-8.
Tomorrow promises some exciting matches so stay tuned for more results.
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.
Although a little late in coming, the draws for the Atwater Canadian International 2010 have been released. Apparently the Pan American organizers had their laptop stolen at the recent World Junior Championships which delayed their publication of the draw.
Top seeded Brice Leverdez faces Zhang Kailai from Canada who may be unseeded, but recently immigrated from China so the top seed could be the first favourite to fall. Other strong favourites for the mens singles title include second seed Canada’s Stephan Wojcikiewicz, third seed Kestutis Navickas, and a handful of other seeds. Perhaps the most dangerous dark horse in the draw is Japan’s Ikeda Yuichi who won the recent Peru International.
Nicole Grether from Germany is the top seed gunning for the womens singles title. Similar to Leverdez in the mens singles Grether has a tough first round against Canada’s Phyllis Chan. On the far side of the draw is Jeanine Cicognini from Switzerland who plays Canada’s Valerie St Jacques. Other notables include Anna Rice, Michelle Li from Canada, and Claudia Rivero from Peru, Oka Hitomi and Ito Kana from Japan.
Almost an exclusively Canadian event, however both the first and second seeds are non-Canadian with Dutch players Ruud Bosch and Koen Ridder as first seeds, and Americans Phillip Chew and Halim Haryanto as second seeds. Recent Peru International winners Derrick Ng and Adrian Liu will be gunning for the second ever international title, they are the third seeds. Fourth seeded Maxime Belanger and Francois Bourret will be looking to make an impact, and unseeded Canadian national champions Jon Vandervet and Alvin Lau are also looming threats.
The German/Canadian duo of Nicole Grether and Charmaine Reid are the top seeds once again after cruising to a straight forward win in Peru recently. As in Peru the second seeds will be Peru’s Christina Aicardi and Claudia Rivero. Both the seeded pairs have challenging first rounds matches. Grether and Reid will likely face the recent Canadian national champions Melody Liang and Jiang Xuelian. The Peruvian second seeds have a possible match up against Michelle Li and Alex Bruce.
In the mixed doubles we have yet another near exclusive Canadian draw with only three pairs not featuring a Canadian player. Top seeded Canadians Toby Ng and Grace Gao will be looking to take their first ever international title, however there are a number of other pairs threatening the title. Perhaps the most threatening are Canadian national champions Jon Vandervet and Milaine Cloutier who are unseeded.