Impressive win for Yigit in quality field
Turkey’s Neslihan Yigit (pictured above on podium) went into this week’s White Nights international challenge in Gatchina as fourth seed but with many top players including a handful on Asians in attendance the tall Turkish number 2 would not have been one of the pre-tournament favourites to lift the title.
Yigit, who was beaten in the race for an Olympic spot by compatriot Ozge Bayrak who incidentally was beaten in round 1, looked to be the player on form with some excellent early round wins and a quarter final win over Maria Ulitina in two easy games was evidence of that form.
As the fancied players such as German duo Schnaase and Konon fell, Yigit really came into focus in her three game win over Yukino Nakai of Japan in the semi-final after the Japanese had beaten top seed Schnaase in two easy games in the previous round.
In today’s final Yigit had to face yet another Japanese player in the form of Mako Urushizaki. The Japanese had beaten second seed Olga Konon in an earlier round in three games. Yigit dominated the match to take the title in two games to once again reaffirm her form this week where others struggled against the Japanese.
In the men’s singles, and after a few runners up near misses over the past twelve months, Lucas Claerbout finally got that big circuit win his has been hunting this past year. The Frenchman had been runner up on no fewer than three occasions and today’s win was always coming after a great 12 months. In the all French final Clearbout beat Lucas Corvee in emphatic style 21-15 21-11.
Fuchs and Michels set themselves up nicely for Rio Olympics
Germany’s Michael Fuchs and Birgit Michels (pictured above on podium) travelled to Russia this week to test out their form ahead of their Olympic participation next month. The German’s were the red hot favourites for the mixed doubles title and delivered in style today with a two set win over home favourites Nina Vislova and Vitalij Durkin.
The Germans dominated the final coming through in two games to win 21-9 21-12 with Fuchs expressing his delight on his Facebook page after the win. “YEESS!! Birgit Michels and me won our final match at the White Nights in St Petersburg against Vitalij Durkin and Nina Vislova with 21:12 and 21:9
We are in good shape and can’t wait to go to Rio!”
Elsewhere there was disappointment for Russian duo Chervyakova and Morozova in the final of the women’s doubles losing out in two games to the strong Japanese pairing of Asumi and Yokoyama while German duo Josche Zurwonne and Jones Ralfy Jansen picked up their second circuit title in just three outings together as a pair in the men’s doubles final beating French pair Bastian Kersaudy and Julian Maio in the final in two games.
For all results from 2016 White Nights click HERE
Article by Mark Phelan Images supplied by White Nights 2016