Clean sweep for Denmark
Date: 4/6/2014 12:02 PM
Published by : Manuel Røsler

Ahead of today’s finals at the Finnish Open the line-up of matches had a strange feeling of inevitability about it as the Danish flag appeared in each and every one of the finals with the possibility of a clean sweep highly likely given the Danish quality on show.

In the end Denmark did what they had never done before in Finland, lift all 5 titles, and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen proved the hero of the day winning both the mixed and men’s doubles titles.

Rasmussen was defending his mixed doubles crown alongside Lena Grebak and in the opening match of the afternoon were pushed hard by Swedish pair Ruponen and Högström. The Danes looked comfortable in the opening game leading 20-16 but a Hogstrom lead comeback caught the Danes by surprise and somehow the Swedish number 1 pairing eked out a 24-22 win to heap the pressure on the Danes.

As in the first game Rasmussen and Grebak dominated the exchanges either side of the interval and once again looked comfortable leading 20-14. The Swedes once again came back and The Danish defending champions looked shaky as they squandered all but one of their 6 game points. In the end the Danes managed to level it up with a 21-19 win and never looked back from that point.

An easy 21-13 win in the deciding set was enough for Rasmussen and Grebak who were thoroughly happy with their title defence in an up and down season.

“It was really good to get back to winning ways here in Finland and we must say that Ruponen and Högström pushed us really hard today and Amanda in particular was outstanding.”

Røpke & Kruse back to winning ways

It has been almost a year since Marie Røpke and Line Kruse last tasted victory at the Denmark International back in May 2013. The Danes have come up against stiff competition this year with Piek/Muskens and the Stoeva sisters being their tournament nemesis over this 2013/14 Badminton Europe circuit season.

Today however was a different story and a refocused and more together Røpke and Kruse proved just too good for the Stoeva sisters who had beaten them last week in Orleans. A two game win reflected the dominance of the Danes and it’s second for the second week running for the Bulgarians after a tough few weeks on tour.

“It is certainly a weight of our shoulders to win again as it has been a while. We are of course happy to beat the Bulgarians and in some ways get a quick revenge for out defeat in France last week.” Said Røpke after the win.

Holst & Kjærsfeldt to strong in singles

Emil Holst (pictured) and Line Kjærsfeldt completely outclassed their opposition in the singles finals this afternoon as both relished a welcomed return to the top step of the podium after an un and down season.

Holst was outstanding all week and his performance today against Lucas Corvee of France was of real quality.

“It is a great feeling to play well once again and feel the excitement of playing in a final. It has been a tough time lately and this win gives me the belief and confidence that all the hard work is worth it” said Holst.

Kjaersfeldt was the winner in a very one sided match against team mate Anna Thea Madsen. The final was one step to far for the queen of the comebacks as Kjaersfeldt dominated from the outset before Madsen was forced to retire injured.

“It has been a while since I won but I know after the European in Basel than my game was in good shape and I have been improving. It was not the best way to win but having said that I felt I was in complete control anyway before Anna Thea was forced to retire”

Delightful doubles for Rasmussen

We had to wait for the final match of the afternoon to witness the magical double for Anders Skaarup Rasmussen and the Dane duly delivered in an exciting and entertaining match alongside partner Kim Astrup.

Huang and Lu from Chinese Taipai have endeared themselves to the European crowds as they travel the European tour and in today’s final once again they played their part in keeping the big crowd entertained.

The Danes proved just too strong on the day and now have to sit back and wait to see have they qualified for the World Championships in Copenhagen.

“Today was really all about winning and putting the bad performance from France last week behind us. It is now the waiting game to see if we qualify for worlds but we have done all we can and it will be very close to see if we make it or not” said Astrup after their two set win.

For all results from Finland Click HERE

To revisit all the matches on demand on Youtube click HERE

Article and Image by Mark Phelan (Live in Finland)

© All rights reserved.

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