SINGAPORE OPEN 2012 SF – Juliane new ‘German Super-Dan’

Juliane Schenk, the ace shuttler from Germany continued her impressive run at the 2012 Li Ning Singapore Open as she registered a remarkable victory over Korea’s ace player Sung Ji […]

Juliane Schenk, the ace shuttler from Germany continued her impressive run at the 2012 Li Ning as she registered a remarkable victory over Korea’s ace player Sung Ji Hyun in the women’s singles semi-final. With this victory, she has registered her name in the women’s singles final at Singapore Indoor Stadium tomorrow. She has also gained the nickname of ‘German Super-Dan’ from the Singaporean fans.

By Lee Suetyan, Badzine Correspondent reporting live  from Singapore. Photos: Yves Lacroix for Badmintonphoto (live)

Juliane Schenk (pictured), who was put on the last match scheduled on Court 2 today, had been rescheduled to play on the TV Court because the organizer wanted the match to finish early while the women’s doubles match was still being played on Court 2. However, they had to switch back to Court 2 during the second game because there was some problems with the court floor.

Despite the court changing issue, Schenk displayed incredible badminton by playing with wonderful aggression and powerful attacking against Sung. In the first game, Schenk allowed Sung to score only 11 points. The second game was close as both players played with aggression, patience, and precision. Schenk couldn’t convert with her first match point and lost it 20-22 to Sung. Sung shouted so loud to cheer herself to secured the second game.

The third game saw more dominance from Schenk, who took an 11-7 lead at the interval. Sung fell even further more behind after the interval, such that she would have needed a miracle to still pull off a win. Without any doubt, Schenk crossed the finish line scoring 21-12 in the third game to send Sung packing.

Today, Schenk was quicker in picking the shuttle from the net tape and kept Sung running to all the corners of the court. Schenk totally outclassed Sung in the net play today.  Sung could do nothing to react to Schenk’s top spin net play that sent the shuttle sitting just on top of the net before crossing over. Schenk, who was diving all around the court to save the shuttles, earned herself a nickname of ‘German Super-Dan’ by the local fans. She likes putting on a show, the crowd loved it everytime she dived. It was such an entertaining match produced by Schenk and Sung. There is also something special with her today because she was wearing shorts today instead of a skirt which she usually wears.

I cannot explain what happened, I was proud of what I did in the first set. Also in the second set, I started to fight back when I was lagging behind,” said Schenk after her great victory.  “In the second set, there was a problem on the court. She had a better start after the court change but I fought back all the time in the second game because I still believed I could win the second set. I had a match point but I couldn’t close it. Nevertheless, I gave myself a kick in the ass in the third game because I really wanted to be on court tomorrow. I am really very proud of what I did today.

I lost to her thrice previously, but I don’t care too much about the previous matches. I knew I had to win.  I am just proud of what I did today.  I have never gone back into the matches which have already happened because I am having a new chance in Singapore to start all over again at zero. Thus, that was a perfect start for me.

I really enjoyed playing today and am thankful to the crowd.  I think they have given me extra energy to play,” added Schenk.

In response to questions about tomorrow’s final, Schenk responded: “We have played with each other so many times before, we know each other so well I guess. I am just enjoying everything right now. Unfortunately, there is no local in the final tomorrow. Thus, I hope we can show the spectators a great match tomorrow.”

We were surprised to see there is no coach with Schenk during her match, she explained: “It’s already been a couple of months that my coach has not been with me. I enjoy the silence in between the interval. The interval doesn’t last long. I want to fully enjoy the silence at that moment and I want to try to bring my energy up again to calm down for a moment. I really appreciate this kind of coaching for myself.

Easy win in the mixed doubles

The semi-final for mixed doubles turned out to be an easy win for both the Chinese Taipei pair and Japanese pair. The match between Chen Hung Ling/Cheng Wen Hsing (pictured) and Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying was over in a mere 31 minutes, as Chen/Cheng coasted to a 21-16, 21-13 victory and never gave up the lead at any point in the match.

The Chinese Taipei pair was very solid and aggressive today. In contrast, the Malaysian pair made plenty of errors, especially Goh, who didn’t display the type of authority that she normally shows at the net. Cheng totally had her under control today.

This is the fifth time we play with the Malaysian pair. We won three out of four in our previous encounters. We played until the rubber games in our previous meetings,” said Cheng.  “Thus, before today’s semi-final, we were actually ready to play 3 games. However, it’s out of our expectation that we won the match so easily. This is mainly due to the tons of mistakes made by the Malaysian pair.

On the topic of her bad low serve in the match, Cheng responded:  “My low serve is really very poor, I really need to improve on it.

Regarding tomorrow’s final against the Japanese pair, Chen said: “We have played before with both the Japanese pairs, it’s not easy to play with them. We won’t usually watch the video of opponents before the match because we rarely record the matches. We will only recall how we play with our opponents previously.

Another mixed doubles on court today was featured by two Japanese pairs of Shintaro Ikeda/Reiko Shiota and Shoji Sato/Shizuka Matsuo. Reiko/Shintaro took on their teammates 21-18, 21-16 in just 37 minutes to taste the victory of being in the final of a super series event for the first time.

New generation arrives

With just one month before the Olympics Games in London, the men’s singles is seeing a new generation come through to challenge the old guard. Wang Zhengming (pictured) defeated Viktor Axelsen, the young rising star from Denmak, in a two-game, 40-minute encounter that the unseeded Wang took 21-13, 21-14.

Wang seemed to play better today than yesterday, a bit more intensity, and attacking better. Wang controlled the rallie much better than Viktor, who was mostly just scrambling to retrieve all the shots despite having better reach with his height. In addition to that, Wang’s net play was sensational. Those shots were so tight and spinning that Viktor found them difficult to return.

Compared to last year, he [Viktor] has improved a lot. He was more mature on court today. His overall ability has also increased. I’ve expected a tough match with him today,” said Wang.

With his victory over Viktor in the semi-final today, he has set up himself his first ever final tomorrow. Wang responded: “It is my first Superseries final tomorrow.  When I came to Singapore, I never thought I could get into the final. I will just do my best tomorrow. A place in the final tomorrow will certainly increase my confidence because I have not been performing well in the past few months. It’s a good chance for me to restore my confidence tomorrow.”

The new generation cannot be established without including the Chinese women in the loop.

The two youngsters from China, Bao Yixin and Zhong Qianxin, who are also the understudies of China’s present superstars, defeated their opponents Miyuki Maeda / Satoko Suetsuna once again to book themselves a ticket in tomorrow’s final. The Chinese youngsters ousted the fatigue Japanese pair easily 21-15, 21-8.

Miyuki said after the match, “We have already expected the lost before the match, we just treat this match as a good preparation for the Olympics Games.

Click Here for semi final results

About Suetyan Lee