Frenchman Thomas Rouxel rode on the energy of home support in a thrilling opening round victory over Kantaphon Wangcharoen at the YONEX French Open 2021.
Rouxel recovered from the loss of the opening game and then edged Wangchaoroen in a riveting third game after saving five match points, 15-21 21-11 27-25.
In the second round Rouxel faces Lee Cheuk Yiu, who caused the upset of the opening day beating third seed Anders Antonsen 21-19 21-19.
The home crowd received a further treat in men’s doubles when Popov brothers Christo and Toma Junior outplayed Daniel Lundgaard/Mathias Thyrri 17-21 23-21 21-10 after saving a match point.
Malaysia’s Goh Sze Fei/Nur Izzuddin, semifinalists at last week’s Denmark Open, were beaten by compatriots Ong Yew Sin/Teo Ee Yi in three close games, 22-24 22-20 21-17.
Top seed Kento Momota begins his campaign on Wednesday against 2017 French Open champion Kidambi Srikanth, while Denmark Open winner Viktor Axelsen, who is seeded to meet Momota in the final, plays Heo Kwanghee.
All England champion Lee Zii Jia, who is in Axelsen’s quarter, has an interesting match first up when he faces Singaporean Loh Kean Yew.
In women’s singles, Denmark Open champion Akane Yamaguchi has a tricky first round in the form of Korea’s Kim Gaeun.
Second seed Ratchanok Intanon, who has had injury problems lately, is seeded second and takes on local hope Marie Batomene. In her half are Pusarla V Sindhu and Kirsty Gilmour.
Ginting, Christie Withdraw
Indonesia’s Thomas Cup heroes Anthony Sinisuka Ginting and Jonatan Christie were among several to withdraw.
Others who withdrew include Denmark Open runners-up Kim Astrup/Anders Skaarup Rasmussen; their compatriots Lasse Molhede/Jeppe Bay, Rasmus Kjaer/Joel Eipe and Hans-Kristian Solberg Vittinghus; Sai Praneeth (India), Michelle Li (Canada), Qi Xuefei (France), Kisona Selvaduray (Malaysia), Ksenia Polikarpova (Israel), Thom Gicquel/Delphine Delrue and Lea Palermo/Delphine Delrue (France).
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