The battle of current and former World Junior Champions on Day 2 of the BCA Indonesia Open was tight and filled with some long rallies but experience still prevailed.
By Nadhira Hafsha, Badzine Correspondent live in Jakarta. Photos: Yves Lacroix for Badmintonphoto (live)
Ratchanok Intanon (pictured), the current women’s singles World Champion and former three-time World Junior Champion, managed her first game very well and won it 21-18 against her heir apparent, 2-time reigning World Junior Champion Akane Yamaguchi (pictured below).
In the second game, despite leading the points most of the times, the Thai teen lost it eventually 19-21. On the third game, she struggled to bring back a good form, often trailing behind. But in the critical points, she managed to do well and won the match by prevailing 21-18 in the decider.
“I was struggling with the wind in the second game, ’’ Intanon explained. “I tried to control the shuttle well, but it didn’t turn out the way I wanted, so I lost the second game. But in the third game I played better and the wind wasn’t a big problem anymore.
“This is my second time meeting [Yamaguchi]. The first time, I lost against her in the first round of this year’s Malaysia Open. This victory would boost my confident to do well in the second round. My target here is to reach the quarter-final, but I will try to do it step by step.
“Akane is a good player, and I think she will be an excellent player in the future.”
Korea puts 4 in women’s doubles last 16
Korea’s women’s doubles pairs have had some respectable results this year but have yet to win a title in 2014. However, in Jakarta, no fewer than four pairs found their way into the second round, including another pair of two-time World Junior Champions Lee So Hee / Shin Seung Chan (pictured below), who were absent from last month’s Uber Cup as well as last week’s Japan Open.
But it was Korea’s top-ranked pair Kim So Young and Jang Ye Na who were in the spotlight, as they struggled for three games to get past Anggia Shitta Awanda / Della Destiara Haris.
The fifth seeds from Korea, started the first game very well and won comfortably 21-10, but in the second game the Indonesians started to play more aggressively and change their tactics. In the decider, the Koreans brought back their first game’s performance and won the match 21-10, 14-21, 21-16.
“In the second game, the control of the Indonesian players was good. They hit the shuttle very well and we made many mistakes,” Jang explained.
All four Korean pairs have their work cut out for them in the second round, including Jang/Kim, who must take on India’s Gutta/Ponnappa.
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