SUDIRMAN CUP 2011 Day 1 – England caught in the Den

The first evening of the championship was void of surprises and of the cheering crowds of the afternoon but not of thrills as the ties in the elite group this […]

The first evening of the championship was void of surprises and of the cheering crowds of the afternoon but not of thrills as the ties in the elite group this evening were consequential and the teams would have to bag them in in order to be a step closer to the quarter-finals exit. Despite every bit of England playing with high hopes in defeating Denmark, they failed 5-0, but not entirely as their efforts added spirit to the game.

By Ooi Ee Lyn, Badzine Correspondent. Photos: Badmintonphoto (live).

On the bench where the players were cheering for their team mates in action, Denmark and England who stood opposing to one another on the court with the same goal – to win – pitched their teams to sit next to each other like long lost soul mates. The scene that intensified the friendly atmosphere was Denmark’s huge flag that swayed from the seats right beside England, whose national flag – white background adorned by a red St. George’s cross – happened to be the exact opposite of Denmark’s white Scandinavian cross on a red background.

However comradely they may be off court, it is logical for a professional sportsman to strive to be at the best to outplay an opponent on court. Same goes to a former comrade of a team who had switched grounds to back up a different troop.

While England’s Jenny Wallwork (photo) and Nathan Robertson was defeated by Joachim Fischer / Christinna Pedersen in the mixed doubles – not without a great start – Kenneth Jonassen, former men’s singles of Denmark, stepped up to coach England’s Rajiv Ouseph to play against Denmark’s very own Peter Gade (photo).

Despite Gade’s 21-17, 21-17, victory, he was seen struggling at the other side of the court before Ouseph. With coach Jonassen hinting from behind, we now see the reason as to why Gade’s day wasn’t very much inspired.  Still, Gade delivered, even if he had to play catch-up a few times, mainly because he left many of Ouseph’s shuttles land on the line – the drift was certainly a catch.

England’s best men’s doubles pair of Andrew Ellis / Chris Adcock, who were put to action against Jonas Rasmussen / Mads Conrad-Petersen (photo), almost had the better of the Danes in the third tie between the two teams. England’s hope of a point kept glinting until the moment they were announced defeated by a close twist from the Danes at the very end of the game. They lost in 21-16, 15-21 and a so-far-yet-so-near 21-23 in the rubber game after wasting two match points at 20-18.

By the time the Chinese team, who were in the stadium to watch the Denmark-England tie, left for their lodgings, Tine Baun and Kamilla Rytter Juhl / Christinna Pedersen went on to clinch two more points from the English to put their eventful day to an end, at last, close to midnight.

On the other hand, the evening to Chinese Taipei, who happened to be competing in elite division C with India and Thailand, was just as crucial as the Danes’. Taipei, known to be upcoming and stronger in the doubles category, fielded three of their best pairs in each doubles category, while only their second singles were placed to play in the men’s and women’s singles, intending to bring their talent to full play.

Well planned enough, the Taiwanese achieved their goal of defeating a fully-charged India 3-2, with the victories of their hopeful doubles pairs.

World #15 mixed doubles Lee Sheng Mu / Chien Yu Chin started the victory by beating Aparna Balan / Arun Vishnu in 21-17, 21-10, followed by the second point contributed by Swiss Open men’s doubles semi-finalists Lee, again and partner Fang Chieh Min after Taipei had lost a point to India in the men’s singles by Hsueh Hsuan Yi against Kashyap Parupalli.

In the women’s singles, world #4 Saina Nehwal (photo) was seen tangling with Taipei’s Tai Tzu Ying, who then hinted a possible unexpected win for the Taiwan team. However, it was Saina who was clearly more experienced, finally ending the game 10-21, 21-12, 17-21 in her favour. The tie was then finished by Cheng / Chien – second women’s doubles pair in the world who recently spent a long spell at world #1 – with a straight-game victory before Jwala Gutta / Ashwini Ponnappa.

In the first division of group 3, Australia trashed Czech Republic 5-0 unsurprisingly, and Peru got the better of Slovakia in 4-1. While in its second division, Sweden’s determined struggles paid off as they outflanked Vietnam 3-2.

Results HERE

About Ee-Lyn Ooi