Pablo back with a bang
After a day and half of qualification in Brno the main draw rounds finally got under way this afternoon with Spain’s top seed Pablo Abian returning to competition after missing the opening month of tournaments after the summer break.
The Spaniard had a tricky opening round match in the top half of the men’s singles draw against Lucas Claerbout of France. In typical Pablo fashion the match ended up being the longest of the day stretching to 76 minutes before the top seed came through 21-18 in the deciding set.
Former world number 2 Kento Momota (pictured above) proved to be the biggest draw of the day after receiving a bye into the main draw from qualification. The Japanese super star is in Europe gathering up world ranking points at circuit level as he bids to make his way back up amongst the world’s elite after being out of the game for over a year.
Momota was an easy winner over Lucas Corvee which proved to be the Frenchman’s second first round defeat in successive tournaments after losing in Belgium two weeks ago.
The big crowd stayed in the hall to cheer on Milan Ludik in his first round men’s singles match. The Czech number one and BEC Centre of Excellence player took Malaysian Lim Chi Wing to a deciding set but ultimately came up short 21-11 to exit his home tournament.
Jakobsen a class apart
Julie Dawall Jakobsen (pictured above) proved that her European Junior gold medal was no fluke back in April as she once again put Marina Ilyinskaya to the sword in clinical fashion on the outside court in Brno. The Ukrainian was no match for the Dane in that Euro final and today the gap grew wider between the gold and silver medallist with Jakobsen winning 21-12 21-15.
Spain’s Beatriz Corrales earned the easiest 4000 winner’s points in Belgium two weeks ago but will have to work a lot harder this week to go back to back with International Challenge wins. Corrales beat Alesia Zaitsava in her opening round today and will play the diminutive Indian Sali Rani in her second round. The Indian is a player Corrales has a 100% record against in past meeting with the most recent being in Belgium two weeks ago.
All the action continues in Brno over the coming days and to watch all the action LIVE and re visit the action from court 1 & 2 on demand visit our YouTube channel HERE
For a full photo gallery from today’s play in Brno click HERE
For all results from day two at the Li-Ning Czech Open click HERE
Article and Live images by Mark Phelan for Badminton Europe