Photo: Badmintonphoto
Loss for the French European medal clinchers
Date: 10/12/2021 12:21 AM
Published by : Rasmus Bech(BEC)

Talent was not enough for the French youngsters.

Every single player of the French Thomas Cup team has won a gold medal on European youth level, and against the hosts from Denmark, the French team showed that they have the potential to deliver good results in the future. Against Korea the French youngsters again got a chance to prove themselves.

Toma Junior Popov got selected for the position as first men’s singles, and the 2017 European Junior men’s singles champion, put up a great fight in the opening game of the tie. Popov lost in three games to Olympian Heo Kwanghee 13-21 21-13 14-21.

- It was difficult to adapt my game. I have not played on this level for four months since Spanish Masters, and I needed one game to get started. Furthermore, he is a great player, who played the Olympics and beat Momota, Popov stated.

Big win for Merkle
In the second game of the tie, the 2018 European Junior men’ singles champion, Arnaud Merkle stepped on court against Kim Donghun.

Merkle, who played against Anders Antonsen in his first match at the Thomas Cup, delivered a great performance securing the first point for France winning in straight games 21-12 21-11.

- It was important for me to bounce back as soon as possible (after the loss to Anders Antonsen). When the top players lose one or two times in a row, they fight to go back on the top level. Two days ago, it was bad but today was very good, Merkle said.

Korean 3-1 lead
Fabien Delrue and William Villeger, the winner of the men’s doubles title at the 2018 European Junior Championships, lost in straight games to world number 132, Kim/Kang, 8-21 8-21, before the newly crowned European U17 men’s singles champion and 2018 European U15 men’s singles champion, Alex Lanier stepped on court.

Lanier put up a great fight against Rasmus Gemke from Denmark, and today the 16-year-old also showed part of his potential, although it was not enough to secure a point for France. Lanier lost 12-21 9-21 to Jeon Hyeok jin.

Last on court was the Popov brothers, Toma Junior, and the 2020 European Junior men’s singles champion, Christo.

Second loss for Popovs
The Popov brothers will be focusing on men’s doubles on the rest year to try making it to the World Tour Finals.

The Popovs, who pushed Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen in the opening match at the Thomas Cup, came up short against Choi/Seo from Korea in the final match of the tie.

Christo Popov and Toma Junior Popov lost 16-21 13-21

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