The 2016 edition of the Croatian International concluded yesterday in Zagreb and while the home supporters and organisers were revelling in the success of home players in both men’s and mixed doubles the real impact came in men’s singles where Marius Myhre did what he had to do, go to Zagreb and win.
The maths were simple, for Myhre (pictured) to advance his hopes of making this summer’s Olympic games nothing less than a win and the 1700 points that go along with success at a future series tournament would progress his Olympic dream.
2016 has been a mixed bag for the Norwegian number one thus far and with a decent field assembled in Zagreb Myhre was always going to have his work cut out for him. His three game win over improving Swede Jacob Nielsen in the quarter final was a sign than maybe the tide was about to turn for Myhre in 2016.
Myhre beat Dane Patrick Bjerregaard in the semi-final and rounded off, what may prove to be a pivotal week for the Norwegian, beating Milan based Wisnu Haryo Putro in the final in three games. Still some Olympic work to do for Myhre but with one foot on the plane to Rio and the confidence gained from this win the wise money will now be on the Norwegian to finished off the job in this the final two weeks of qualification.
Durkinjak and Komendrovskaja double up
While the Olympic dream continues for Marius Myhre the Olympic light has well and truly gone out for Zvonimir Durkinjak (pictured above) in singles. The Croat was beaten in the quarter final in the singles event but sipped from the cup of success in both mixed and men’s doubles in a glorious day for the home support on home soil.
Durkinjak teamed up with Mateja Cica to claim the mixed crown beating the Dutch/Bulgarian combination of Vlaar and Mitsova in the final. Durkinjak rounded off a memorable week in the very last match on finals day by lifting the men’s doubles crown alongside Filip Spoljarec. A two set win over Bjerregaard and Normann of Denmark was just reward for Dukinjak who played in three events over the three days’ competition.
Matching Durkinjak with two titles was Russian Elena Komendrovskaja. The Russian was top seed in the women’s singles and came through a comfortable week lifting the title in two games over Alesia Zaitsava of Belarus.
Komendrovskaja then teamed up Ksenia Evgenova to lift the women’s doubles title beating compatriots Kut and Serebriakova in a convincing two game final.
For all results from the finals of 2016 Victor Croatian International click HERE
Article and archive images by Mark Phelan for Badminton Europe.