SINGAPORE OPEN 2015 Finals – Clean sweep by first-time Superseries winners

Kento Momota, Sun Yu, Ou Dongni / Yu Xiaohan and Angga Pratama / Ricky Karanda Suwardy have all reached a new milestone in their professional career. As the Singapore Open […]

Kento Momota, Sun Yu, Ou Dongni / Yu Xiaohan and Angga Pratama / Ricky Karanda Suwardy have all reached a new milestone in their professional career. As the came to a close, the six of them were crowned their first ever titles.

Serla Rusli and Seria Rusli, Badzine Correspondents live from Singapore Indoor Stadium. Photos: Badmintonphoto (live)

For Kento Momota (pictured), the attention on his achievement in Singapore is even more pronounced. Not only was the 20-year-old the youngest ever men’s singles winner in the history of the Superseries, which dates from 2007, but he also became the first ever shuttler from Japan to win a Superseries title in his discipline.

“This is the first time in history that a Japanese has won the men’s singles title in the Superseries. I felt the pressure before coming here, but I tried to overcome it. After all, I think winning this tournament is really worthy to show to the Japanese people that we can win,” said Kento.

The Japanese youngster beat Hu Yun (pictured) of Hong Kong China, 21-17, 16-21, 21-15, who was also eyeing his first ever Superseries title.

“The match was very close. Hu Yun was really good in his offense. I tried to be patient to make him run around. Patience was the key to winning this match,” recounted Momota.

It was so close yet so far for Hu Yun. With his remarkable wit and composure, he managed to turn the table around in the second game – from losing 10-6 to overtaking Momota and eventually winning the game. His attacks to Momota’s right hand corner often stunned the Japanese, and he relied on this weapon until things started changing when he was leading 12-7 in the final game.

“When I was lagging 7-11 in the third game, Hu Yun was really aggressive and he got really excited. To be honest, I felt that it was a little bit difficult to beat him. But when I changed court, I found out that the shuttle wasn’t flying too fast. So I just pushed him forward to let him go to the back of the court. That was the key that meant I could turn the tables,” continued the newly crowned men’s singles champion.

Hu Yun also offered his side of the story: “At that point, I wanted to win so much that I became less patient. I felt quite nervous and hence made a lot of unforced errors and played out of lines.”

Momota took this opportunity to find his rhythm back and started controlling the game. The exhausted Hu was unable to keep up and, just like last week in Malaysia Open, he was defeated yet again by the Japanese shuttler 13 years his junior.

Sun Yu 4, Tai Tzu Ying 0

Sun Yu (pictured) maintained a clean slate against Tai Tzu Ying by reigning over the twenty-year-old shuttler from Chinese Taipei in an incredibly close match that ended 21-13, 19-21, 22-20.

Similar to the men’s singles final, the match boasted another incredible story of comeback in the third game by the eventual winner. Tai looked all set to own the match after winning in the second game and dominating the whole third game. However, the turning point came when Tai reached her first match point, and Sun was able to prevent her from converting it into a title.

“I think it was because my tactic before the game was simple that my shots were more decisive,” said Sun.  “In the end that when her physics became weaker, I played more decisive shots. When I was already behind 17-20, I did not think too much – I just focused in controlling point by point. I also focused in attacking her and tried to catch up.” Not only did she catch up, but she was able to nick the game, the match, and her first Superseries title from the Taiwanese.

Indonesians denied Zhang of his hope for double title

Once again, unseeded underdogs Angga Pratama / Ricky Karanda Suwardy (pictured) of Indonesia created an upset against their much higher ranked opponents. This time world #11 and All-England runners-up Fu Haifeng / Zhang Nan failed to curb the attacks of the world #41 duo from Indonesia. Fu / Zhang lost 15-21, 21-11, 14-21.

Angga / Ricky were very convincing and practically controlled the first and third games.

“After we lost in the second game, we tried to find more ways. We tried to be more patient and more daring with our shots,” commented Angga.

The Chinese were the third seeded pair that the Indonesian duo successfully took down in Singapore – previously it was the tournament favourites Lee Yong Dae / Yoo Yeon Sung in the quarter-finals and Hiroyuki Endo / Kenichi Hayakawa in the semi-finals. This, together with the fact that they just won their first Superseries title, is a very impressive achievement considering they only started pairing up six months ago.

“We have been working hard together and have learned to trust each other,” continued Angga regarding their partnership.

“We feel really really happy to win our first Superseries title. We will continue to work hard and hopefully will be able to win more Superseries titles,” said Ricky.

With this defeat, Zhang Nan’s hope for a double title in this tournament was crushed. He had to be satisfied with just his mixed doubles title with Zhao Yunlei, which he received after their final match against fellow Chinese Lu Kai / Huang Yaqiong was declared a walkover.

Ou / Yu reigned over world #1

In order for Ou Dongni / Yu Xiaohan (pictured) to win the women’s doubles title, they needed to overcome a pair 20 rungs above them in the finals, world #1 and tournament favourite Misaki Matsutomo / Ayaka Takahashi.

“I think we played well and were able to execute our tactics. I felt during the game, our attacks were better and that was the key to winning the match,” said Yu Xiaohan. She and Ou Dongni was paired up less than a year ago and have now pocketed their first Superseries title.

“Overall, I think it is a very good result for us, and we are now more confident in future tournaments,” concluded Yu.

Final results
XD: Zhang Nan / Zhao Yunlei (CHN) [1] beat Lu Kai / Huang Yaqiong (CHN) [6] [walkover]
WD: Ou Dongni / Yu Xiaohan (CHN) [6] beat Misaki Matsutomo / Ayaka Takahashi (JPN) [1]  21-17, 21-16
MS: Kento Momota (JPN) beat Hu Yun (HKG)  21-17, 16-21, 21-15
WS: Sun Yu (CHN) beat Tai Tzu Ying (TPE) [5]  21-13, 19-21, 22-20
MD: Angga Pratama / Ricky Karanda Suwardi (INA) beat Fu Haifeng / Zhang Nan (CHN) [5]  21-15, 11-21, 21-14

Click here for complete results

About Serla Rusli