Unity wins the day
Date: 11/19/2015 9:05 AM
Published by : Mark Phelan
The 2015 edition of the Scottish Open Grand Prix got underway today in the Emirates Arena, Glasgow and while the men’s singles took centre stage on the courts the abiding memory of the day was the display of togetherness and unity displayed by the small French team in attendance including all officials as they whole arena stood together in defiance against the atrocities in Paris last Friday. 

It was a poignant moment that served to prove that sport will always serve to unite and its people, no matter nationality, religion or creed, will come together to stand defiant against terrorism and all it stands for. Today the whole badminton community in Scotland did just that for a minute’s silence before the start of play. 

The French team of Lucas Corvee, Gaetan Mittelheisser, Baptiste Careme, Bastian Kersaudy, Delphine Lansac, Ronan Labar their coaches and officials took centre stage to lead the minute’s silence which drew a standing ovation just before the start of the men’s singles main draw. Badminton may be viewed as a small community but today Scotland showed that together the greater badminton community has a big voice. 

Seeds fall in men’s singles draw. 

With qualification taking centre stage for most of the morning and afternoon the evening session was taken up with the start of the main draw proper in men’s singles. With a round of 64 it was not long before some upsets became apparent. 

Lucas Corvee had top seed Hans Kristian Vittinghus on the ropes in their opening match after the Frenchman took the opening game 21-16 but Vittinghus bounced back to eventually get over the line and into round two winning in three games.

Ireland’s Scott Evans was the first big seed to fall. The Irishman, seeded 3, came unstuck against qualifier Chia Hao Lee of Taipei as the Irish numbers one season continues to go from bad to worse. 

Dmytro Zavadsky was the next seed to fall after a 76-minute battle against Christian Lind Thomsen of Denmark. The Dane eventually coming through 22-20 in the deciding set after saving one match point trailing 20-19. 

Thomas Rouxel the twelfth seeded Frenchman was destroyed by Nick Fransman of the Netherlands. A below par performance by the Frenchman but forgivable given the events in his homeland over the past week. 

Probably the biggest upset of the day came as European Games champion Pablo Abian of Spain went down to Kim Bruun of Denmark. The Dane displaying maturity beyond his years in a thrilling two game match in front of the TV cameras winning 21-18 23-21. 

There were comfortable wins for England’s Rajiv Ouseph, Emil Holst and the man in form Raul Must of Estonia while defending champion Ville Lang advanced to the next round by virtue of a walkover, something the Finnish number 1 would take with open arms. 

The action continues tomorrow from 10am (CET) with the start of the mixed doubles. You can follow all the action live on Badminton Europe’s YouTube channel by clicking HERE

For a full round up of today’s results from Scotland click HERE

Article and Images by Mark Phelan for Badminton Europe (Live in Glasgow) 

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