Photo: Polish Badminton Association
Lanier wins International Challenge
Date: 3/27/2023 12:05 PM
Published by : Thomas Fuchs (BEC)
Alex Lanier crowns himself ORLEN Polish Open champion and gets his first European Circuit victory of 2023. Mia Blichfeldt finishes Swiss Open as runner-up. 

An intense tournament week for Alex Lanier was yesterday crowned with his victory over Kalle Koljonen from Finland. Lanier, who had played some intense matches on his way to the final was happy and tired after winning 21-14, 21-15 to take his first championship of 2023.

"This final was more a mental battle. We were both tired on court. It was about who will find a way to push more and find more energy. I think I was maybe a little more powerful today", said Lanier after his final win, ending an exhausting week in Tarnów.

Another European player even managed to win two titles at the International Challenge event. Mads Vestergaard from Denmark lifted the trophy in mixed doubles and men's doubles.   

"We played four good matches in a row. It was an amazing week for us", said Verstergaard after winning the men's doubles final. Vestergaard and Daniel Lundgaard beat the Scottish twins Matthew and Christopher Grimley 21-19, 21-14 to win their first tournament as a pair in only their second time playing together. 

Earier in the day, Vestergaard also won the mixed doubles final with his partner Christine Busch. The Danes faced Stallwood/Warner from England and won 21-17, 21-19. 

A good week for Mia Blichfeldt 

The Polish Open were not the only tournament with many European starters last week. The best athletes in the world were fighting for the title at the Swiss Open in Basel, a BWF World Tour 300 event.

After Viktor Axelsen, Ben Lane/Sean Vendy, and Robin Tabeling/Selena Piek all lost their semifinals on Saturday, Mia Blichfeldt was the only European to play the finals in Switzerland. It was also her first final since the European Games 2019.

After an exciting run, beating the world number 18 and 19 on her way to the final, Blichfeldt put on another great fight against Pornpawee Chochuwong from Thailand. The first game was open until the world number 11 from Thailand pulled away at 16-16 to win 21-16. Blichfeld fought back in the second game and earned a 17-13 lead before Chochuwong started another streak to turn it around 17-20 and finally won the match 18-21.

Finishing the Swiss Open as runner-up was an amazing result for the Dane, who dropped out of the top-20 late in 2022 and is aiming to climb the world rankings again to qualify for her second Olympics. "What an amazing week. I am so happy and proud of my performance at the Swiss Open", wrote Blichfeldt on her Instagram after the final. 

Spain Masters kick-off tomorrow 

After German Open, All England, and Swiss Open, the World Tour continues on European soil. The Madrid Spain Masters will start tomorrow and will feature many of the big names of the sport like Carolina Marin, Anders Antonsen, Thom Gicquel/Delphine Delrue, and the Stove sisters.

In men's doubles, the current world number 1 and recent All England winners Fajar Alfian and Muhammad Ryan Ardianto from Indonesia will also play in Madrid.

Another week of exciting badminton ahead! Follow our social channels on Instagram and Facebook to stay up to date with the latest action from Madrid.
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