Picture: Sven Heise
Former EC beat French talent
Date: 11/3/2018 2:57 PM
Published by : Rasmus Bech(BEC)
The European men’s singles Champion from 2017, English Rajiv Ouseph beat the French talent, Toma Junior Popov for a spot in the men’s singles finals at SaarLorLux Open.

- I am trying to play my way into form. 

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Rajiv Ouseph gave the statement to Badminton Europe after the quarter-finals at the BWF Super 100 event, and based on the performance in the semi-final, Ouseph’s form is looking to improve from day to day.

Rajiv Ouseph won the first game against Popov 21-8, but in the second game the 2017 European Junior Champion was back on track. Popov won the second game 21-19.

Gambled on the last point
The third game was a thriller. Popov had the lead in the beginning but in the middle of the game Ouseph led 12-9 and 15-12. At 18-18 Popov had the momentum, but the experience of Ouseph was the difference. Ouseph is ready for the final after winning the decider 21-19.

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- I played the conditions very well in the first game. He came out better and controlled the net in the second game. There was no real rhythm in that game, but I just tried to stick in and fight, Ouseph said.

- It was good to get a lead in the middle of the third game. I played two good point from 18-18 to 20-18, and then I just had to gamble on that last point and it worked.

- Maybe I should swing less
Toma Junior Popov, 20, is one of the biggest European talents, and the young French admits that the experience was the biggest difference on court in today’s semi-final.

- There are a lot of small things that makes the difference between me and him. He is used to being in a position like this, and he was more experienced when the points were close, Toma Junior Popov says. 

- I also broke five-six strings which costed me points. Maybe next time I will swing less, Popov says with a smile on his face. 

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