India’s Subhankar Dey recorded his second victory over Tommy Sugiarto this year, prevailing 15-21 21-14 21-17 in the opening round of the YONEX French Open 2019.
It has been a tough period for the 26-year-old. He has been without a victory on the HSBC BWF World Tour since that performance against the Indonesian.
“It feels great. It’s a long-awaited result. I beat him at the India Open in March but for a very long time I haven’t been able to get a win,” he said.
“I was doing well last year and won the SaarLorLux Open. I’ve beaten Lin Dan, [Jonatan] Christie and Tommy [Sugiarto].
“But today is a bit of a breakthrough. I’m just glad to get the win.”
Dey used the slow conditions and the fact Sugiarto was backing up from a semifinal effort in Odense last week to his advantage.
“I think he was a bit tired and the conditions were very slow but he’s a good player and I had to work really hard to get the points,” he said.
“I’m now looking forward to playing another good match on Thursday and finishing off the season well.”
Denmark’s Hans-Kristian Vittinghus also recorded a much need win defeating World Championships bronze medallist Kantaphon Wangcharoen 21-10 21-15. Vittinghus had not passed the first round since the Indonesia Open in July.
“I played almost mistake-free today. I had really good length on all my lifts and was good at making disguises and small variations in the play and he didn’t find a way to solve that.
“Today was one of the few times this year that I’ve put it all together in a full match. I’ve played really well most of the year but unfortunately in only 80 per cent of my matches and the other 20 per cent, I’ve had a dip in concentration. You can’t do that and win against these world-class players.
“I think today I turned a corner. I managed to keep my head cool and keep my focus the entire match,” he said.
It is now the Thai’s third first-round loss since his career-high effort in Basel.
Lefel/Tran Delight Home Fans
Emilie Lefel and Anne Tran gave the home supporters something to cheer about with a 21-12 21-19 win over fellow Europeans Ekaterina Bolotova/Alina Davletova.
Tran said afterward: “It’s a very good day. Of course, we won. It was amazing to play in front of the French public.
“It’s always great to play here and we’re very happy to win the match.”
Women’s stars Ratchanok Intanon and Carolina Marin both struggled in their first-up encounters.
In mixed doubles, Tan Kian Meng/Lai Pei Jing ousted compatriots and fifth seeds Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying, 19-21 21-16 21-13.