On the second day of BWF World Tour Super 750 French Open event, being played at the Stade Pierre de Coubertin in Paris, all the fancied players on show were able to win their respective matches and move through to the pre-quarterfinal stage. However, both the top seeds and world no. 1 players in singles events – Kento Momota of Japan and Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei – dropped a game in their victories.
Things started well for Tai as she took the first game easily. But then her opponent Yvonne Li of Germany fought back to take the second game and force a decider. But the Asian Games champion ensured that she completed an easy victory. The scoreline was 21-7, 13-21, 21-12.
While Tai is known for losing her way at times in matches, World Champion Kento Momota usually keeps things tight. However, the Japanese player seemed in trouble when he lost the first game to Wang Tzu Wei of Chinese Taipei. However, Momota recovered to win the next two games without any more drama. The final score was 15-21, 21-15, 21-16 in his favour.
Other important victors included World Championships silver medalists Anders Antonsen of Denmark in men's singles and Nozomi Okuhara of Japan in women's singles. Antonsen defeated Israel's Misha Zilberman 21-10, 21-8 while Okuhara triumphed over China's Han Yue 21-15, 21-11.
The second seeds in both the single's division also went through without any great difficulty. Chou Tien Chen of Taiwan defeated India's Kidambi Srikanth in three games, 15-21, 21-7, 21-14 while Akane Yamaguchi of Japan, who suffered a shock early exit in Denmark Open, defeated her compatriot Sayaka Takahashi 21-12, 21-17.
Other notable winners included former World Champion Viktor Axelsen of Denmark, Asian Games champion Jonatan Christie and Olympic champion and the runners-up in Denmark Open last week Chen Long.
Among the women, former world no. 1 Saina Nehwal also went through with an easy win while China's leading hope HE Bing Jiao, who had a breakthrough win in the Korea Open some weeks ago, also progressed without much trouble.
AN Se Young, South Korea's 17-year old prodigy who stunned World Champion PV Sindhu in Denmark last week and almost got the better of Olympic champion Carolina Marin also, had a dominant victory over Busanan Ongbamrungphan of Thailand. It would be interesting to see her progress in the coming days.