Monday, January 27, 2020

Thailand’s No 1 players dash home hopes

Jul 18. 2019
 Ratchanok Intanon
Ratchanok Intanon
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By The Nation

World No 7 Ratchanok Intanon silenced the boisterous Indonesian fans by ousting home hope Gregoria Mariska Tunjung in the second round of the Indonesia Open in Jakarta on Thursday.

Playing in front of a partisan crowd, the 2013 world champion and former world No 1 had to summon all her resources to outlast the 2017 world junior champion 21-13 21-19 21-15 and book a spot in Friday’s quarter-finals.

The Thai No 1 next faces world No 1 and defending champion Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan, who edged world No 23 Busanan Ongbamrunphan 21-19 21-18. 

It will be a daunting task for 2015 champion Ratchanok but history is on her side – she leads the top seed 13-11 in their head-to-heads.

Joining her in the last eight is Thai No 3 Nitchaon Jindapol, who upset Canadian world No 14 Michelle Li 22-20 21-17, but history is definitely not on her side heading into Friday’s match.

The world No 26 must overcome world No 4 Akane Yamaguchi, having lost all five previous clashes with the Japanese player.

On the men’s side, Thai No 1 Kantaphon Wangcharoen, had a thrilling 84-minute encounter with world No 8 Anthony Sinisuka Ginting of Indonesia before prevailing 22-20 11-21 21-19. 

The world No 18 has certainly been doing it tough this week – he also came through a tough, 85-minute battle against Thailand Open champion Kanta Tsuneyama in the first round on Tuesday. 


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