Merrilees & Zavadsky keep European flag flying
Date: 10/10/2013 5:38 PM
Published by : Manuel Røsler

Kieran Merrilees (pictured) & Dmytro Zavadsky made sure that Europe will have at least one player in the semi-finals of the Dutch Open men’s singles draw as both came through against tricky Asian opposition in today’s third round.

Ukrainian Zavadsky has looked solid in his opening three matches taking care of two Malaysians and Indonesian Andre Marteen on his march to the quarter finals.

“I am feeling good and fresh as this is only my second tournament so far this season” said Zavadsky after his third round victory.

Merrilees to has look strong after battling his injury demons for the past year. His display today against second seed Chun Seang Tan sees the Scot enter his first Grand prix quarter final after a mixed year on the Badminton Europe circuit.

The Scot took the opening game 21-18 and looked at ease in the second leading 19-11. However a case of the nerves set in and the Malaysian started to close the gap and got to within one point trailing 19-18. Merrilees settled his nerve to halt the Malaysians momentum and followed with another quick point to take the match 21-18.

“I played well but got nervous towards the end. It was a big relief in the end to get those two points I needed”

Both remaining Europeans will now meet each other in tomorrow’s quarter final with the prize for the winner a spot as the sole European in Saturday’s semi-finals.

Schnaase rolls back the years

Germany's Karin Schnaase continued the good form she showed at the Belgian International by defeating 2013 European Junior Champion Stefani Stoeva to make yet another quarter final in her long career.

The now independent German has a new spring in her step after being relieved of her national duties earlier in the year and is clearly enjoying her badminton once again. Stoeva looked laboured in her strokes and Schnaase exploited her advantage with her all out attacking game to win 21-16 in the deciding game.

“Now I just play the tournaments close by and I am really enjoying my time on court without any pressure” said Schnaase. “Stefani looked off her game today and this was a good win for my old legs”

Defending champion Kristina Gavnholt (Czech Republic) joined Schnaase in the quarter finals after ending the dream of comeback girl Lianne Tan. The Czech number one will have to lift her game to a new level come tomorrow’s quarter finals where she will face off against second seed and world number 19 Busanan Ongbumrungpan of Thailand.

“Piek” performance from Selena

There was some late evening rewards for the home players as Selena Piek alongside partner Eefje Muskens made the Stoeva sisters, reigning 2013 European Junior Champions and winners from Bulgaria last week, look very pedestrian on court in an easy two game win.

The Dutch duo took the match on a very dubious line call which insensed the Bulgarians but that aside the Stoeva’s sisters really had nothing to complain about as Piek and Muskens ran out easy winners.

“The shuttle looked in to me and I expected another rally which was unlucky for the Bulgarians but these are the things that happen in matches and the umpire was not very decisive in dealing with it” said Piek about the final point.

“That said we controlled the match so even if another point was played I would have expected us to win”. 

Ruud Bosch and Koen Ridder added another Dutch pairing into the quarter final draw with a hard fought three set win over English pair Briggs & Towler.

For all results from Dutch Open click HERE

Subscribe to Badminton Europe’s YouTube channel to watch all the LIVE action by clicking HERE

For Facebook photo gallery from today’s play click HERE

Article and Image by Mark Phelan (Live in Almere)

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