6½ continental title defenses in one Sunday!

Three continents held their badminton championship finals on Sunday and the Pan Am region led the way with two and a half title defenses, while a world #1 and #2 […]

Three continents held their badminton championship finals on Sunday and the Pan Am region led the way with two and a half title defenses, while a world #1 and #2 accomplished the same in Asia, with Africa providing one repeat champion but two players who title twice each.

By Don Hearn.  Photos: Badmintonphoto (archives)

The Badminton Asia Confederation was the first to get their continental champions crowned.  Both defending champions who were still in it on finals day emerged victorious.  India Open champions Wang Yilyu and Huang Dongping (pictured right) won what was by far the closest final of the day in Wuhan, beating compatriots He Jiting and Du Yue on their 6th championship point opportunity.

The women’s doubles stayed competitive, as the former World Champions beat their successors 21-19 in the deciding game.  From then on, though, the scores became a lot less interesting, with Akane Yamaguchi winning her second game 21-9, then 2018 winner winning his decider 21-8 against World Tour Finals winner Shi Yuqi.  The cake was taken by Hiroyuki Endo / Yuta Watanabe dominating world #1 Gideon/Sukamuljo 21-3 to win the men’s doubles title in straight games.

Final results
XD:  Wang Yilyu / Huang Dongping (CHN) [2] beat He Jiting / Du Yue (CHN)  21-11, 13-21, 23-21
WD:  Chen Qingchen / Jia Yifan (CHN) [4] beat Mayu Matsumoto / Wakana Nagahara (JPN) [3]  19-21, 21-14, 21-19
WS:  Akane Yamaguchi (JPN) [3] beat He Bingjiao (CHN) [5]  21-19, 21-9
MS:  Kento Momota (JPN) [1] beat Shi Yuqi (CHN) [2]  12-21, 21-18, 21-8
MD:  Hiroyuki Endo / Yuta Watanabe (JPN) [5] beat Marcus Fernaldi Gideon / Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo (INA) [1]  21-18, 21-3

Click here for complete results from the Badminton Asia Championships

In the Pan Am Badminton Championships in Aguascaientes, Mexico, Canadians came in as defending champions in all but one discipline.  In that one discipline, men’s singles, defending champion and top seed Ygor Coelho of Brazil made it past the Canadian champion but was stopped by home favourite Job Castillo before the Mexican was himself ousted, by 2-time champion Kevin Cordon of Guatemala.

Cordon met fellow then 2-time winner Osleni Guerrero (pictured right) of Cuba in a final that would determine which man would claim his 3rd regular continental title.  Guerrero barely came away with the straight-game victory and is now the 3-time winner, but Cordon still has two Pan Am Games gold medals to his name, one of which he got by beating the Cuban in the gold medal match.

Guerrero was also one of two players who still had a chance at two titles on Sunday.  However, after a strong second-game performance against Jason Anthony Ho-Shue / Nyl Yakura (pictured top), he and Leodannis Martinez Palacio couldn’t maintain their consistency and it was the Canadians who claimed their fourth straight continental men’s doubles title.

In mixed doubles, Josephine Wu also extended her continental title streak to 4 years but hers has spanned 2 disciplines and 3 partners as, in the quarter-finals, she and new partner Joshua Hurlburt-Yu (pictured above) had already taken care of her partner from last year’s title effort.  Wu and Hurlburt-Yu beat Brazil’s Farias/Lima in straight games but the Canadian had another chance to title in the women’s doubles.

Wu and Catherine Choi made it close but Rachel Honderich / Kristen Tsai won 27-25 in the second game to make it repeat winners in both of the all-Canadian finals this year.  The other had come earlier, when Michelle Li beat Brittney Tam in straight games.

Final results
XD:  Joshua Hurlburt-Yu / Josephine Wu (CAN) [1] beat Fabricio Farias / Jaqueline Lima (BRA)  21-14, 21-19
MS:  Osleni Guerrero (CUB) [3/4] beat Kevin Cordon (GUA) [3/4]  21-11, 22-20
WS:  Michelle Li (CAN) [1] beat Brittney Tam (CAN) [2]  21-15, 24-22
WD:  Rachel Honderich / Kristen Tsai (CAN) [1] beat Catherine Choi / Josephine Wu (CAN)  21-15, 27-25
MD:  Jason Anthony Ho-Shue / Nyl Yakura (CAN) [1] beat Osleni Guerrero / Leodannis Martinez Palacio (CUB)  21-11, 20-22, 21-10

Click here for complete results from the Pan Am Badminton Championships

The All Africa Badminton Championships in Port Harcourt, Nigeria may only have seen one title defense but it was the only event this weekend that produced double titlists, and two of them at that!  In fact, the mixed doubles final was itself a repeat of last year and, unfortunately for home favourites Enejoh Abah / Peace Orji, the winners were again Koceila Mammeri and Linda Mazri of Algeria.  Mammeri later teamed up with Youcef Sabri Medel (pictured left) to deal Abah another defeat in the men’s doubles.

Nigeria took the other 3 titles, however.  The first home shuttler to claim a championship title was Dorcas Ajoke Adesokan, who won convincingly over 3-time winner Kate Foo Kune.  Then came two all-Nigerian finals, with Adesokan prevailing again in the women’s doubles.

Final results
XD:  Koceila Mammeri / Linda Mazri (ALG) beat Enejoh Abah / Peace Orji (NGR) [3]  15-21, 21-16, 21-18
WS:  Dorcas Ajoke Adesokan (NGR) [3] beat Kate Foo Kune (MRI) [1]  21-12, 21-13
MS:  Anuoluwapo Juwon Opeyori (NGR) [2] beat Godwin Olofua (NGR) [3]  21-17, 16-21, 21-17
WD:  Dorcas Ajoke Adesokan / Uchechukwu Deborah Ukeh (NGR) beat Amin Yop Christopher / Chineye Ibere (NGR)  21-14, 20-22, 21-17
MD:  Koceila Mammeri / Youcef Sabri Medel (ALG) [3] beat Enejoh Abah / Isaac Minaphee (NGR)  21-18, 21-17

Click here for complete results from the All Africa Badminton Championships


Don Hearn

About Don Hearn

Don Hearn is an Editor and Correspondent who hails from a badminton-loving town in rural Canada. He joined the Badzine team in 2006 to provide coverage of the Korean badminton scene and is committed to helping Badzine to promote badminton to the place it deserves as a global sport. Contact him at: don @ badzine.net