One of the pairs that made heads turn at the DANISA Denmark Open 2020 last month was home duo Amalie Schulz and Christine Busch.
Denmark are still searching for a pair to fill the place left vacant by the accomplished Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter Juhl, and while it might be early days yet, Schulz and Busch might have kindled some hope among Danish fans.
Both aged just 19, Schulz and Busch capitalised on the opportunity at their home event, making the semifinals and getting the crowd behind them in the opening game of their match against All England champions Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota. Their cheerful demeanour on the big stage was a positive sign, and home fans will be hoping they can build on the promise they have shown.
“We had a bit of nerves,” admitted Schulz, after the quarterfinal win over Scotland’s Julie Macpherson and Ciara Torrance. “We were so excited to play that we did a bit too much to win and then we got more calm. It’s a huge thing to make the semifinals. We’ve never experienced anything like this. It (semifinals) will be fun and hopefully we can play a good match.”
Schulz and Busch made steady gains last season. They won the Lithuania International in June, were in the semifinals of the Bulgarian Open, and lost to eventual champions Lin Fang Ling and Zhou Xin Ru in the quarterfinals of the BWF World Junior Championships.
Another quarterfinal – at the Hungarian International – and a semifinal, at the Norwegian International, followed, marking the close of a productive 2019.
Used to lower-tier events, the two teens were excited to drink in the atmosphere of a World Tour 750 tournament.
“We forgot our tactics a bit and we got nervous when we felt we were about to win, so we had to remind each other of our tactics,” said Busch, of their first round win.
In addition to her prospects in doubles, Schulz has potential in singles as well.
“I have to wait and see,” Schulz smiled, on whether she will play either or both categories, going forward. “I haven’t decided anything yet if I’m playing doubles or singles. It helps to play both, you get good movement and you can play fast, and many of the singles shots are also useful in doubles.”
As a Danish women’s doubles pair, the exploits of Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter Juhl look large. At the moment, Busch and Schulz are a long way off; the one similarity being that they too are a right-left pair.
“We’d like to be like some of the best Danes, like Christinna and Kamilla,” said Busch. “To be as good as them would be amazing.”