What could have been a double success for Spain on home turf turned into the new generations time to shine, as Viktor Axelsen claimed the men’s singles title in a three game match against Pablo Abian in a 48 minute matchup.
The mixed doubles title was won by the top seeded Danish pair of Schjott-Kristiensen and Delbo Larsen who beat their Croatian opponents Durkinjak and Ponzanovic in a tight two game match, with the Danes winning 21-17, 21-19. The men’s doubles title was taken by the Polish pair of Cwalina and Logosz in a one-sided final over the 4th seeded Kasbauer and Zurwonne, with the Poles winning 21-14, 21-11.
The women’s doubles final was the only match to go the distance, with the top seeded Dutch pair of Van Dooremalen and Jonathans defeating Reid and Grether in three games, but the shock was on with the 2nd seeded Canadians taking the opening game over their Dutch counterparts, but the top seeds fought back to win the next two games and take the title 12-21, 21-18, 21-14.
The women’s singles final was the most one sided match of the day with 7th seeded Carolina Marin defeating 5th seeded Olga Konon in a 21-13, 21-14 victory that took just 20 minutes, topping off the week for Marin who failed to drop an game in the entire week.
The two teenager superstars of the singles game in Europe have again battled through an excellent field of competitors to reach a major final and for Carolina Marin it is especially significant with her playing in front of a home crowd.
Viktor Axelsen’s run to the final has been impressive, with four victories in straight games including an impressive 21-14, 21-19 victory over Przemyslaw Wacha in the semi final. His opponent in the final will have the crowd on his side as Spain’s 5th seeded Pablo Abian came through a 68 minute war with top seeded Tommy Sugiarto, taking the third game 22-20 to book his place in tomorrow’s final.
Carolina Marin’s route to the final is similar to Axelsen’s, four wins, no dropped games and into the final. She also takes on the 5th seed, Olga Konon of Germany who has been just as impressive in her route to the final. Konon has failed to drop a game also and has been equally if not more impressive than Marin in reaching tomorrow’s final.
The men’s doubles features the top seeded pairs from the halves of the draw, with 4th seeded Kasbauer and Zurwonne taking on the 2nd seeded Cwalina and Logosz. The German 4th seeds came through a tight semi final against Saeki and Taohara eventually winning 23-21, 23-21. The Polish 2nd seeds have had little trouble in reaching the final, winning all three matches in straight games.
The top two seeds in the women’s doubles face off in tomorrow’s final, with the 2nd seeded Reid and Grether progressing despite Grether’s retirement from the singles on Friday. They take on the top seeded Dutch pair of Van Dooremalen and Jonathans who have progressed without the loss of a game to the final, whilst the Canadian pair have lost just one game also on route to the final.
The mixed doubles finals sees the top seeded Danish pair of Delbo Jensen and Schjott-Kristiensen take on the unseeded Croatian pair of Durkinjak and Ponzanovic, after they dismissed the 2nd seeded Ng and Gao in their semi final, taking the third game 22-20 to reach the final. The Danish pair have been the polar opposites in their route to the final, winning all three matches double quick time to reach the final after being on court just 80 minutes.
With an excellent field present in Madrid this week, the first full day of action has provided some unlikely results in the singles events as well as some success for some of the future stars of the game.
Viktor Axelsen’s impressive win over 6th seeded Eric Pang was the talking point of the men’s singles draw, with the teenager defeating one of top European players in two games to book his place in the quarter finals. Top seeded Tommy Sugiarto was relentless in his 21-15, 21-3 win over Joachim Persson and sets up a quarter final against Spain’s own Pablo Abian in the last 8. Second seeded Hans-Kristian Vittinghus is also safely into the last 8 after a pair of two game victories and sets up a quarter final clash with Chinese Taipei’s Hsu Jen Tao who defeated the 7th seeded Ville Lang in a convincing two game victory.
Susan Egelstaff, seeded 2 was the highest seed to start the week in the women’s singles and has had little trouble in reaching the last 8 and will take on the Sashina Vignes Waran, seeded 8th in the quarter final. There is also Spanish interest with Carolina Marin who is also through to the last 8 and takes on Ireland’s Chloe Magee in the quarter final after the retirement of Nicole Grether in the second round match. Olga Konon is the highest seed in the top half of the draw and has had little trouble on route to the last 8, where she will play Kristina Ludikova of the Czech Republic.
The three seeds that started the week in the men’s doubles are still in the draw at the last 8 stage, with 2nd seeded Cwalina and Logosz taking on the Spanish pair of Leal and Ojeda in tomorrow’s quarter final. 3rd seeded Bosch and Ridder take on the Austrian pair of Koch and Zauner who came through a tight three game match against Gilmour and Campbell of Scotland. The only seed in the top half of the draw is 4th seeded Kasbauer and Zurwonne who came through a three game match to set up a quarter final against the Japanese pairing of Saeki and Taohata.
The top seeded Van Dooremalen and Jonathans are safely into the last 8 and take on the Spanish pair of Jimenez and Rodriguez. There has been more good fortune for the Spanish with the pairing of Molina and Ojeda not having to play a match to reach the last 8, they take on the English pair of Langley and Smith who defeated the 3rd seeded Mexican pair of Gonzalez and Montero. The 2nd seeded Reid and Grether are into the last 8 but question marks over Grether’s injury in the singles could be a factor in their quarter final match against Diaz and Lee.
The top two seeds are safely through to the mixed doubles quarter finals and are also joined in the last 8 by the 4th seeded Magee’s of Ireland. There is an all-Spanish quarter final also, with Longo and Ojeda taking on Lorenzo and Marquez for a chance to take on the winner of the Durkinjak/Ponzanovic versus Ng and Gao matchup.
Picture Provided by Rene Lagerwaard