(Photo: Badminton Europe/ Koen Mutton)
Denmark and Germany with a steady start to Group 1
Date: 2/16/2021 10:04 PM
Published by : Alan Raftery
Day one is complete at the 2021 European Mixed Team Championships in Vantaa, Finland, after Group 1 played our their first matches.

Both Denmark and Germany are strong favourites to advance the group into the semifinals. The two finalists last time are in a group with hosts, Finland, and qualification group 6 winners, Scotland. 

Germany vs Scotland
Germany were wanting a strong 5-0 result to kick off their campaign, however, it was not to be. Joshua Apiliga, ranked 777 in the world, faced Max Weisskirchen, ranking over 700 places higher at 65. Despite this disparity in rank, the young Scot was quietly confident. 

-I really fancied my chances coming into this game. I think the hall suits my game really well. I had a good talk with Bob [Robert Blair] before the game and I knew my game suited Max quite well. 

After winning the first game 21-17, there was an expectation that the German would respond, however, Apiliga just grew stronger into the match. Winning the second game 21-12, he expressed his delight and how his teammates supporting him helped along the way.

-It’s massive. We are a really tight group, and I knew they would always have my back in the game. 

The rest of the ties went the way of the Germans ending 4-1, with Christopher Grimley/ Adam Hall coming closest to pushing for a three-game match against Mark Lamsfuss/ Marvin Seidel. 

Denmark vs Finland
Hosts Finland valiantly fought against reigning champions Denmark. The team featured Joakim Oldorff in the singles, who faced world number two, Viktor Axelsen. Oldorff won a bronze at the 2020 European Junior Championships in Lahti. 

Interestingly, Viktor Axelsen won his European Junior gold in this very arena a decade ago. He shared some kind words towards his young opponent. You can watch it here

Also a bronze medalist from Lahti 2020, Nella Nyqvist, still just 14, faced Line Christophersen. The tall Dane, herself a junior talent, winning the 2018 European Junior Championships, won comfortably, however, Nyqvist spoke about how much she will take from this experience here.
To watch all of the live-action from the 2021 European Mixed Team Championships, 16-20 February, visit

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