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Reigning champion Gilmour has ‘bad day at the office’
Date: 11/2/2021 4:19 PM
Published by : Alan Raftery
The reigning champion and number eight seed, Kirsty Gilmour, was stunned by Turkey’s Aliye Demirbag, leaving her searching for answers. 

The talented Turkish player won the European junior bronze in 2015, now 23 she scored a big win over the world number 19 Scot. A tight opening game saw Demirbag come back from a 10-point deficit to steal it. Shaken up by this, Gilmour was unable to make an impact in the second game with the match ending 21-19, 21-15 for Turkey. 

Gilmour, who reached the semifinals of the Denmark Open a fortnight ago, describes her feeling coming off court.

-Despite being reigning champion I don’t have a great feeling in this hall. The level is higher this year, not to make excuses but that was much lower than my best level. It was a very bad day at the office. Aliye [Demirbag] played well, she was very aggressive, but I was just not there today. 

Physical or mental fatigue
Many players have been on the road for a number of weeks back to back. This may have played its part.

-Yeah, a little bit of fatigue but that’s no excuse for today to be honest. I would expect myself to go on and win that game. Maybe mental fatigue, but not really physical. It’s definitely one I will have to talk over with coaches. 

Gilmour has bounced back stronger before and vows to do the same after this blip. 

-This is not anything major. I don’t have to go back to the drawing board. This is just one bad day for me. I will change my focus; I will have a little rest, I play a club match, I’ll play Scottish Open and World Championships. Two big things still to go and I think I can get my head in a better space for them. 

-We’ll be back at it and we’ll be fine, she ended with a smile. 

On the topic of motivation, Aliye Demirbag will now play Ukraine’s Maria Ulitina, who after the Olympics had a moment to consider her future as a player. She has decided to continue and now has a chance to play for the quarterfinals. 

The two played in Azerbaijan two years ago. Demirbag narrowly took the win 21-16 21-23 21-17. 

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