Denmark’s Anders Antonsen clinched his first title in more than two years after defeating Loh Kean Yew of Singapore in a thrilling final at the Korea Open 2023 badminton on Sunday.
The Dane, who has struggled with a groin strain, stayed composed despite falling behind early in the match at Jinnam stadium in Yeosu, South Korea.
Antonsen finally gained an edge when Loh smashed a shot into the net with the court open, going on to take the match 11-21, 21-11, 21-19 in 68 minutes.
The 26-year-old said he was “emotional” after clinching his first title since the European Championships in May 2021.
“It means absolutely everything to me,” Antonsen said.
“It’s been such a long time and I’ve been through so many tough times, injuries, and at times I’ve doubted myself like never before.
“It’s so amazing to finally win a title again,” he said.
In the women’s singles final, second seed An Se-young triumphed over Taiwan’s Tai Tzu Ying 21-9, 21-15, defending the title she won last year and providing a treat for home fans.
“This is my sixth title this year... every time I win I feel different,” the 21-year-old said.
“So I feel different today, too.
“Initially I felt nervous today too but, as there were a lot of Korean fans out there, I wanted to be at my best and I managed to show them my best game.”
Korean fans were disappointed earlier when women’s doubles duo Kim So-yeong and Kong Hee-yong came up short against China’s Chen Qing Chen and Jia Yi Fan.
India’s Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty won their second title in a row, beating world number one duo Faja Alfian and Muhammed Rian Ardianto of Indonesia 17-21, 21-13, 21-14 in the men’s doubles final.
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