Spain Masters: Katethong Revives Olympic Hopes

Supanida Katethong has hauled herself back into Olympic qualifying contention by booking a spot in the Madrid Spain Masters 2024 final.

Katethong’s 22-20 21-12 defeat of Kim Ga Eun – only her second in seven meetings and first since the 2021 Swiss Open over the Korean – means she will end the week with at least 57,244 points on the Race to Paris rankings.

It will take her above Nozomi Okuhara into the top 16, boosting her chance to qualify for Paris 2024 as Thailand’s second women’s singles behind Ratchanok Intanon, who she faces in the title round today. An NOC is allowed two singles places if both its players finish the qualification within the first 16.

The Continental Championships starting in a week will be the last events to offer big points before the campaign concludes on 28 April.

Meanwhile, fourth seed Intanon progressed after seeing off Komang Ayu Cahya Dewi 21-12 20-22 21-13. It’s her first final since losing to Akane Yamaguchi at the Canada Open eight months ago.

Other Highlights

» Toma Junior Popov also ended his long wait to appear in an HSBC BWF World Tour final – his last being at the same tournament, which he won in 2021 – by beating third seed Chou Tien Chen 21-15 20-22 21-18.

» Cheng Xing/Zhang Chi and Rinov Rivaldy/Pitha Haningtyas Mentari will contest a second final in two weeks against each other after doing so at the Orleans Masters on 17 March.

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