Australia dished out two dominating performances, to notch up wins against USA and Austria before bowing out to Singapore in day five of the Sudirman Cup.
Day 3: vs Austria
Australia went one better than its previous tie score, this time fielding Ashwant Gobinathan in men’s singles and keeping the rest of the line up the same as played the USA. All matches were won straight through and the most points any of the host’s opponents earned in a single game was 13.
Gobinathan adjusted to court conditions immediately and stayed in command throughout his encounter with Vilson Vattanirappel to conclude it 21-11, 21-10.
The Austrian was especially vulnerable to the cross smashes and his reactions slowed down whenever a rally lengthened.
Won our second round match against Austria with a final score of 5-0. Had a rest day today and… https://t.co/MTXkkZuTLz
— Sawan Serasinghe (@Sksbros) May 24, 2017
Day 5: vs Singapore
Australia met a higher seed in their last pool tie and found out how their earlier opponents must have felt afterwards. Nonetheless, they can be proud of hard fought leads in several games of the four matches they conceded.
Australia’s Setyana Mapasa / Sawan Serasinghe sprinted towards the first interval against world #18 Tan Wei Han / Terry Hee Yong Kai in the mixed doubles. Thereafter, the potency of Hee’s smash and drive shots cut a wedge in his opponent’s defences. Australia reacted with a change in game plan as they ought to but hesitation in the execution was perilous and Singapore triumphed, 21-16, 21-6.
In men’s doubles, Australia’s Matthew Chau / Sawan Serasinghe put forward a studious performance against the scratch pairing of former mixed world #9 Danny Bawa Chrisnanta with current mixed #18 Terry Hee Yong Kai, to earn 14-21, 21-23. The Singaporeans whose individual credentials also includes higher men’s doubles world rankings than the Aussies.
Australia’s opponents were cautious at the same time as clearly used to the pressure of higher speeds so their baseline capabilities eventually saw them through the deuce situation. All this goes to show that the locals are close to graduating to the next level were they to play frequently at this standard.
In a reversal of fortunes, the Setyana Mapasa / Gronya Somerville who have been ranked inside the world’s top 20 this year struck too many shuttles for Ong Ren-Ne / Crystal Wong Jia Ying to get a racquet and won women’s doubles, 21-11, 21-15. Pace, delicacy and lack of unforced errors were displayed by the Aussies. After the match, their joy at fulfilling a goal of taking it in straight games was obvious.
Australia will use experience gained this week as a valuable step towards their goal of winning a badminton team medal at Gold Coast 2018 Commonwealth Games.