(Photo: Badmintonphoto)
Taking in the atmosphere
Date: 3/14/2023 3:25 PM
Published by : Sara Gonzalez Martinez (BEC)
One of the oldest and most prestigious tournaments in the world, the YONEX All England Championships have kicked off today.

It’s time for a historic tournament. The YONEX All England Badminton Championships 2023 have started today and will be taking place until Sunday 19 March. After the top-level badminton show that we saw at the Germany Open last week, even more stars have joined in for the Super 1000 tournament.

Pressure and support from the home crowd
Many players have already had the chance to play their first match in this year’s edition. Home crowd favourites Chloe Birch/ Lauren Smith faced Srivedya Gurazada/ Ishika Jaiswal, USA, in their opening match.

“We knew that we were the favourites today. We wanted to come out really strong and stamp down our authority in the match and we certainly did that. We are really happy with the first game but there was a bit of a lack of concentration in the second game. Even though we were down a couple of points, we managed to turn it around and take it in two games which is important when you’re looking ahead in the week,” explained Lauren Smith after their win in straight games against the pair from the USA, 21-9 21-18.

Playing on home soil comes with pressure but also with a push of confidence when taking in the support from the crowd and Smith knows the importance of making the most out of the advantages. “The home crowd is here so there is a bit of added pressure. You want to perform for them. It’s actually better to use it in a positive way. The crowd and the atmosphere really lift us and it’s an event we really enjoy.”

Big challenge ahead for Fruergaard/ Thygesen
A strong pair that took out the English duo last week at the German Open, sixth-seeded Kim So Yeong/ Kong Hee Yong, have defeated Linda Efler/ Isabel Lohau, Germany, on this first day of the All England, 21-11 21-3.

There was also a European match-up. Maiken Fruergaard/ Sara Thygesen and Debora Jille/ Cheryl Seinen, only separated by two spots in the world ranking, faced each other in an intense three-game match.

“I think we got to a good start and got into our game but then it was a bit difficult for us to handle, especially in the defense, so it was really difficult to control because there was a bit of wind in there. Luckily, in the third game we managed to get a little bit aggressive and it worked for us,” stated Thygesen.

In the next round, the Danes will be facing the top seeds, China’s Chen Qing Chen/ Jia Yi Fan. “They are quite good and we know that we need to be ready in all aspects of the court and the game,” concluded Fruergaard. 

Watch all matches here and make sure to check our social media to keep up to date with the latest news from the All England.
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