BWF Denmark Open 2019: After opening day of upsets, top players assert their supremacy

Day 2 of Denmark Open saw the most fancied players coming into their own and preventing any further surprises.

Tai Tzu Ying
Tai Tzu Ying won her opening match of the tournament Reuters

The first day of BWF World Tour Super 750 Denmark Open saw the top seed in women's singles, Akane Yamaguchi, 5-time World Champion Lin Dan and 8th seed Anthony Sinisuka Ginting crash out. But on the second day, normal ordered was restored.

Olympic Champion Chen Long, former World Champion Viktor Axelsen, 2nd seed Chou Tien Chen and 4th seed Anders Antonsen progressed safely into the second round. Among the ladies, 2nd seed Chen Yu Fei, former world no. 1 Tai Tzu Ying and former World Champion Ratchanok Intanon also went through.

Chen Long had to endure a three-game long match that lasted for more than an hour to get his win. The two leading Danes in the tournament, Axelsen and Antonsen both finished the job in two games. Chen of Chinese Taipei, however, also received a spirited fight from Lu Guang Zu of China as the match went into the second hour.

Tai Tzu Ying, on the other hand, made light work of Nitchanon Jindapol to win her match in less than half-an-hour. However, Jindapol's much stronger compatriot, Ratchanok, had to make no effort at all as she received a walkover in her match against Mia Blichfeldt of Denmark.

Viktor Axelsen
Viktor Axelsen also went through into second round easily Reuters

Singapore's Yeo Jia Min failed to make an impression on the All England champion Chen as the match ended in just over half-an-hour in favour of the Chinese.

In other noteworthy developments, Sayaka Takahashi of Japan defeated former world no. 1 Saina Nehwal of India to cause a minor upset. The talented Thai youngster Khosit Petradeb also registered a victory, getting the better of Wang Tzu Wei of Taiwan.

For the home country, their two biggest hopes – Axelsen and Antonsen – are alive in this tournament but not for long. If both win their Round of 16 matches, then the two will face each other in the quarter-final. Axelsen hasn't been in the best of forms this year while Antonsen has shown steady improvement that saw him win the silver medal in the World Championships.

While Akane Yamaguchi may be out of the race, owing to her loss in the first round, Nozomi Okuhara is still keeping Japan's hopes alive in women's singles. The two ladies most closely watched would be Tai as she hasn't been as good as before recently, and Carolina Marin who seems to be getting back to her best. If both ladies play to their potential, they will meet in the final. That would be a mouth-watering prospect.

This article was first published on October 17, 2019
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