General

Tight and tense, but a win (Photo: Badminton Photo)
- It was unexplainable at times
Date: 3/6/2019 1:52 PM
Published by : Alan Raftery
England’s Mixed Doubles pair, Marcus Ellis and Lauren Smith, came into this tournament as seventh seeds. The draw threw out a difficult first round match against He Jiting and Du Yue from China.

Asking Ellis and Smith whether there is added pressure being seeded. Smith responded.

- Yes, I guess it does. This is our home tournament, so it’s quite a big deal to be seeded. It feels really great and reflects our good performances recently. 

- In terms of draws, He and Du they [He and Du] are ranked 9 or 10 in the world, so for a seed that’s no a very good draw. But you have to play the hand your dealt, and we did that today, fighting through a tough match. 

Relief

The match turned into a real nail-biter. After dropping the first game, Ellis and Smith fought hard to grind out the 2nd game.

In the decider, the English pair found themselves 15-10 behind, but a late surge and tense finish saws the win the match 12-21, 21-19, 21-19. Asking about there emotions following this match, Ellis explains

- First thing that springs to mind is relief. Personally, I do not think I played well, so just happy to get over the line. 

Asking about their thoughts how the game went tactically, Ellis added that

- It will be a tough one to analyse. There were periods where we would get 5 points in a row, then they would. So, it was unexplainable at times. But when we were 15-10 down in the third game, we knew we could have a swing to get back into the game. 

Finally, both Ellis and Smith now have level-doubles to play, I asked how they can recharge after a match like that? Smith said

- Lots of food and a good stretch to cool down. We do have our routines in what we want to do. And also try and mentally reset, which is quite important. 
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