Denmark Open: ‘Like She Was Never Away’

Pearly Tan and Thinaah Muralitharan got through unscathed their first match since their shortlived Japan Open campaign with a straightforward win on Day 1 of Denmark Open 2022 presented by VICTOR.

A tearful Tan was wheeled off the court two months ago in Osaka after injuring her hamstring and knee in the third game of their second round duel against Baek Ha Na/Lee Yu Lim.

There were initial fears she could be set for a lengthy layoff, but the 22-year-old has recovered to feature in Odense – where she and Muralitharan saw off Supissara Paewsampran/Puttita Supajirakul 21-16 21-14 in 34 minutes – despite only returning to training two weeks ago.

“It felt like she was never away,” said Muralitharan after the match, confirming their on-court rhythm was not disrupted by Tan’s time off. “I could focus on my job well and didn’t have to worry about her. She covered me well and did her part as she always does.”

Looking comfortable on her feet throughout, Tan was “just happy I was able to finally play a match”.

Tan moved about confidently during the match.

“I feel confident. My coaches and partner really helped during my injury,” she said.

On the match, Tan added: “Thinaah was great, I felt safe and could play my game (without worrying).

“I feel comfortable on court and I don’t think too much about the injuries. I hope to get my momentum back and just take one step at a time.”

Muralitharan concurred: “Yes, point by point. Match by match.”

The Malaysians face a sterner test in the next round, where they take on world No.1s Chen Qing Chen and Jia Yi Fan.

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