Monday, August 10, 2015
TEXT BY DEV SUKUMAR | BADMINTONPHOTO
Estonia’s Raul Must struggled to contain thoughts of Olympic qualifying points but staggered past Austria’s Luka Wraber in the Men’s Singles first round of the TOTAL BWF World Championships 2015 today.
The second game was a scrappy affair with both players missing match and game points before Must finally converted his third match point, 21-10 27-25. The Estonian (below) conceded it hadn’t been a pretty match, but was delighted that he had achieved his goal of making the second round.
“I didn’t play so well, I had a lot of pressure because of the Olympic qualifying points. It came into my mind in the second set. I’ve taken a big step closer to making the Rio Olympics.
“In the second game he was missing very easy points at game point. I made some stupid mistakes also. Both of us knew that this is our chance, because tomorrow I know I don’t have a chance against (defending champion) Chen Long. Today, we both knew we had a chance, that’s why it wasn’t a pretty game.”
His vanquished opponent rued his missed chances but stayed on to watch other matches. It was hard, Wraber said, to be on the sidelines after a lot of preparation, but he was philosophical in defeat.
“Of course the first moment is a big disappointment. But I always stand up very fast and look forward to my next tournament, because this is one tournament out of many.”
Canada’s Martin Giuffre (featured image) too earned a second round place against a formidable opponent. Giuffre (No.118) made light of the vast difference in rankings against opponent Thomas Rouxel (No.55), holding off the Frenchman’s fightback to prevail 21-15 16-21 21-12.
After a first game loss, Rouxel appeared to have regained rhythm in the second. He levelled at 10-all but after the change of sides the fight suddenly disappeared.
Giuffre said he had managed the drift better.
“There’s a drift from one side, it’s tricky. You have to change the way you play, depending on your side. I was able to find momentum in the third and carry on; I was lucky in the third. I managed to take the net after the switch of sides, and he got nervous after that.”
The Canadian will play No.4 seed Kento Momota of Japan, and said he was looking forward to the opportunity to test himself.
“It will be a great opportunity for players like myself, who are not able to play the Superseries, to be able to play the top players and evaluate where we are. It will be a great experience.”
No.16 seed Rajiv Ouseph (England) was shown the door by Thailand’s Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk, 21-16 21-12.
In Women’s Singles, France’s Delphine Lansac (above) surprised Natalia Perminova (Russia) 21-18 21-18 and Singapore’s Chen Jiayuan put out another Russian, Ksenia Polikarpova, 21-14 21-9.
One of the closest matches of the day was seen in Women’s Doubles, with young Malaysians Lim Yin Loo and Lee Meng Yean outlasting experienced Singapore pair Shinta Mulia Sari/Vanessa Neo, 19-21 22-20 21-19 in 74 minutes.
Having lost the first game, the Malaysians did well to rebound from 8-15 to 19-16 and force a decider. The Singaporeans nearly caught up with their opponents in the closing stages but Sari made the critical error with a service error that gave the Malaysians match point.