Spain Masters: I Can Battle the Top Seeds, says Hart

Although Jordan Hart could not clear the first hurdle at Spain Masters 2021, the women’s singles shuttler vowed to use her defeat to make herself better.

Hart lost 17-21 21-14 13-21 to Julie Dawall Jakobsen as Danish women’s singles marked a good start to the tournament with three of their contingent winning their opening matches.

Jakobsen however, did not have it easy, taking 57 minutes to conquer the Poland player after weathering a stormy attack in the second game, which pushed the match to a decider.

“There were positives and negatives. My start in the second game was good and that helped me. This tournament has really given me confidence,” said Hart.

“I’ve struggled with consistent form but I can battle the top seeds at these events. I really want to take this now and progress further so I’m turning those losses into wins.”

Hart wants to build on her showing in Spain.

Hart entered the tournament under a new flag (Poland) after switching national federations from her native Wales.

“It’s such a grateful feeling to compete under the Polish flag. It’s nice to see it next to my name on the scoreboard but it will take a long time to get used to,” admitted Hart.

Lianne Tan saw off Spain’s Laura Alvarez 21-7 21-11. It was a low shot at the front court Alvarez could not lift that sealed the victory for the Belgian.

Tan was rather relaxed pre-matched.

“I made some mistakes but it was good to get used to the conditions. I came into the match quite laidback. I’m so glad tournaments are back. I was putting a lot of pressure on Alvarez so that worked well,” said Tan.

Tan had a straightforward win over her Spanish opponent.

In men’s singles, Mauritius’ Georges Julien Paul fell to sixth seed Ygor Coelho from Brazil 21-10 21-14 but enjoyed the outing in Huelva.

“I’m grateful to be playing on the European circuit. It’s a great experience and I hope to compete at this level in the future. I’m heading to Denmark for training before the Tokyo 2020 Olympics to improve my level,” said Paul.

Paul faced a tough match against Coelho.

Indonesian mixed pair Muhammad Yusuf Maulana/Angelica Wiratama capitalised on a crucial match point over Scotland’s Christopher Grimley and Eleanor O’Donnell to win 14-21 21-13 23-21. In a match that could have gone either way, the Scots were dominant in the decider, firing powerful rallies down the line and just narrowly missed out.

“In the last few points, we tried to do our best and not make mistakes. Our opponents played well. Grimley is very strong and tough,” admitted Wiratama.

“We want to be champions at the Spain Masters,” added Maulana.

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