(Photo: Badmintonphoto)
Axelsen: A big dream coming true again
Date: 3/20/2022 7:37 PM
Published by : Alan Raftery
Viktor Axelsen has started hunting down the title records of previous men’s singles legends after a faultless week in Birmingham leaving him lying on centre court in disbelief. 

The Olympic Champion and world number one has kickstarted his year with one of the biggest titles on the calendar – a tournament the Dane has thrived in, being in four consecutive finals. 

Today’s finals day opponent was Lakshya Sen, who became the first Indian in the men’s singles final for over two decades and the man who cut short Axelsen’s German Open last week. 

Axelsen, after a slow start against Sai Praneeth in round one, sliced through Caljouw, Ginting and Chou Tien Chen without dropping a game. The momentum was with the 2020 champion and Sen had no answers to Axelsen’s rock-solid defence. 

-He was really good. It was really hard to put the shuttle down. He was looking really solid in the attack as well. The same strategy was there as last week. I was not as consistent today, Sen conceded. 

The same but different
When Axelsen won his first title, it was a very different atmosphere in the arena – a mostly empty one due to the pandemic. Fast forward to 2022 and the noise was deafening while Axelsen played with crowd, encouraging them to make more noise before he launched his racket towards a lucky fan. However, Axelsen is keen to respect and value every title he wins.

-It is still the same feeling whenever you win the last rally. It’s so hard to describe, it’s a rush of emotions, a rush of relief and I am so happy right now, Axelsen explained thoughtfully. 

When winning the last point, Axelsen collapsed on the floor and lay there, stunned at what he has been able to achieve. 

-I just tried to enjoy the moment and soak it all in. It is not often you get to experience these moments and I am lucky enough to do that twice now in this arena. It was a big, big dream coming true again, Axelsen said with pride. 

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