Daniel Paiola achieved a long-cherished dream by booking a second round Men’s Singles match against Lin Dan at the TOTAL BWF World Championships today.
The Brazilian world No.75 was almost down and out against David Obernosterer but found the resources needed to stave off four match points and edge past his Austrian opponent in a long and scrappy battle, 21-14 11-21 24-22.
“I have achieved my best dream ever, I play Lin Dan in the next round,” gushed Paiola (featured image).
“I was a fan of Lin Dan when I started playing at 13. I completed my second dream today. In 2011 I played Peter Gade; now I will play Lin Dan.
“Today’s match had some difficult conditions, but the atmosphere was very nice. We have the same style so it was tough. It was mental, not so much physical; just had to keep going. I was lucky in the end. It’s incredible.”
Paiola revealed that he owed everything to his mother, who raised him after his father passed away when he was a year old.
“I’m playing for my mother and brother. My father passed away when I was a year old; she always helped me and paid for my training in Portugal. My coach never charged me anything. My mother has had to struggle all along; all of this is for her, my father and brother.”
The day had happy tidings for Paiola, but a once-formidable player was reduced to a sideshow on an adjacent court a short while later. Japan’s Kenichi Tago, a top contender not so long ago, was decimated by Poland’s Michal Rogalski (left). After a tight first game, Tago gave up by the middle of the second, allowing Rogalski’s big smashes to go unanswered.
The lanky Pole admitted that Tago had lost the fight in the second game.
“I knew he was not in his best shape. It’s my best win because I’ve never beaten a player of his level. I prepared well; I was training in Germany and then in Poland. I’m very happy as I’m trying to qualify for the Rio Olympics and I got 3,000 points.”
Mixed Doubles saw a few exciting second round battles. No.9 seeds Lee Chun Hei/Chau Hoi Wah appeared in control against Malaysia’s Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying, but some change of tactics at the break in the second game helped Malaysia turn the tide. The Star Australian Open winners from Hong Kong bit the dust 17-21 21-17 21-18.
No.15 seeds Jacco Arends/Selena Piek (Netherlands) almost followed them out as they trailed France’s Ronan Labar/Emilie Lefel 11-15 in the second game. The Dutch however were able to snatch six points in a row to earn the advantage, and even though their opponents caught up at 19, Piek won match point with a sharp return of service, and the Dutch closed out the match 17-21 21-14 21-19.
Indonesia had cause for joy with No.12 seeds Edi Subaktiar/Gloria Emanuelle Widjaja easing past Jorrit De Ruiter/Samantha Barning (Netherlands) 21-13 21-15. No.3 seeds Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir had little trouble dismantling the challenge of Russia’s Rodion Kargaev/Ekaterina Bolotova, 21-11 21-11.
However, the home crowd had disappointment in Women’s Singles, with No.16 seed Maria Febe Kusumastuti outplayed by Chinese Taipei’s Pai Yu Po, 18-21 21-13 21-9. Thailand’s Busanan Ongbumrungpan (15) stopped the advance of France’s Delphine Lansac (21-18 21-9), while India’s PV Sindhu (above) struggled early on but eventually stamped her class over Denmark’s Line Kjaersfeldt.