It seemed almost destined that the young up and comer Viktor Axelsen would storm his way to the title in Sweden, but another relatively unknown player from Indonesia named Indra Bagus Ade Chandra was too much for the young Dane. Similar to Axelsen, Chandra fought his way through the qualifying rounds to find his place in the finals. The Indonesia defeated Axelsen with a confident 21-15, 21-12 scoreline. We can likely expect to hear much more from both of these young players.
In the women’s singles it was Kaori Imabeppu of Japan taking the title over England’s Elizabeth Cann in a relatively quick 21-15, 21-10 win. After defeating China’s Rong Bo it appeared that Cann would have more to challenge Kaori with, but it appeared that perhaps fatigue got the best of her. The only game that Kaori dropped throughout the entire tournament was to the top seed Ella Diehl.
While they may have lost the women’s singles, England rebounded with a confident looking Robin Middleton and Chris Langridge in the men’s doubles event. The two managed to take the title without dropping a game, and with few close games at that. They defeated their Danish opponents Mikkel Elbjorn and Christian John Skovgaard 21-11, 21-18.
Both the women’s doubles and mixed doubles went to Danish pairs, and both finals were intensely fought. In the women’s doubles Helle Nielsen and Marie Ropke snuck past their Dutch opponents Lotte Jonathans and Pauline Van Dooremalen in three close games 17-21, 21-15, 21-18. Then in the mixed doubles Mads Pieler Kolding and Britta Andersen narrowly defeated their Ukrainian opponents Valery Atrashchenkov and Elena Prus 18-21, 21-18, 21-17.
The EBU tour goes on a bit of a break again now with Thomas and Uber Cup preliminaries happening around the world. Stay tuned for more BWF tour results from those events soon.
With the cancellation of the Estonian International last week the Swedish International is the first EBU tournament of the new year, and a strong field is in play after a short holiday break.
While the Danes may be upset with the loss of Jan O Jorgensen across the globe in Malaysia, they have reason to maintain their hope for the future today. Another young rising star seems to be coming up the ranks as Viktor Axelsen fought his way past Sweden’s top player Henri Hurskainen in three long games, and then also defeated his compatriot Sune Gavnholt in two tight games to book himself a place in the quarter-finals. In the next round he will have to face off against another Dane Kasper Ipsen. A strong performance in his first ever EBU event.
Perhaps the upset of the day comes with Finnish Ville Lang the second seed falling to Swedish qualifier Mattias Borg in two relatively quick games 21-13, 21-14, only to lose the next round to another Finnish player Eeto Heino.
Chinese qualifier Rong Bo is back at it again after a strong performance last month in Ireland. Today she defeated 8th seeded Chloe Magee and Alesia Zaltsava to earn her quarter-final place against Tatjana Bibik.
While the Danes are fairing well in the mens the women are struggling a bit more. The only Danish woman left is Camilla Sorensen who managed to upset the second seed Maja Tvrdy in three games 21-15, 15-21, 21-11, and then followed that up with another win over Japan’s Mizuho Muramatsu 21-16, 16-21, 21-16 to make it to the quarter-finals against England’s Elizabeth Cann.