Pictured: Catelyn Rozario, New Zealand. Photo credit: Badminton Photo
The BWF World Junior Mixed Team Championships closed the Group stages on day three as the juniors began to fight for final playoff positions.
Australia opened the morning with their last Group E match against Armenia. The regional junior Mixed Doubles champions, Jack and Angela Yu got off to a strong start as they stormed through the opening game, before the remaining team barely allowed to the opposition to reach double figures.
The 5-0 whitewash solidified Australia’s fourth position in Group E to set up a clash against Sri Lanka in the first of the playoff matches for a final standing between 25-32.
Team New Zealand were next up on court as they began their campaign to top the 17-24 playoff competition. Edward Lau got the team off to a superb start with a thrilling three-game victory in a lengthy game, just one minute short of the hour.
However, the Scottish opponents retaliated with a comfortable victory in the Women’s Singles before a nail-biting clash in the Men’s Doubles. New Zealand’s Ryan Tong and Jack Wang took the first end 28-26, before narrowly losing out on the second game and losing control of the third.
This left it up to Scotland’s Rachel Andrew and Rachel Cameron to secure the victory in the Women’s Doubles, ending on a 3-1 victory.
Australia’s first playoff match couldn’t have been much more dramatic, as the contest went the distance over all five disciplines. With every intention of securing the first game, Australia fielded the brother-and-sister duo Jack and Angela Yu, who won over three close games.
Sri Lanka responded in the Men’s and Women’s Singles to take a 2-1 lead, despite a particularly close batlle in the Women’s Singles (defeated 21-18 and 21-19).
Victoria He and Angela Yu restored balance in the game following a comfortable win in the Women’s Doubles, leaving it all down to the deciding Men’s Doubles.
Sri Lanka lead throughout the entire first game, before Australia’s Ricky and Otto looked set to take the game into a third as they marched off to a 14-9 lead. However, a consecutive run of 6 points saw the Sri Lanka’s surge past the Australian’s, all the way to the finish line, giving Sri Lanka a 3-2 victory.
As a result of today’s matches, Australia will complete against Uzbekistan in tomorrow’s playoffs for places 29-32, from 1pm local time (GMT+3).
Meanwhile, New Zealand will be up against Slovakia as they compete for final standings between 21-24, also from 1pm local time.
Follow the draw and check out all results on Tournament Software.