Photo Credit: Badminton Photo
The Asian Leg of the HSBC BWF World Tour continues this week as the Super 1000 event, TOYOTA Thailand Open 2021, gets underway in Bangkok today.
The reigning men’s singles, doubles and women’s doubles Continental Champions from last year’s VICTOR Oceania Championships in Ballarat are back in action, alongside aspiring Olympians Oliver Leydon-Davis and Anona Pak. All four players and pairs will be looking to better their results this week; following their first round exits at last week’s YONEX Thailand Open 2021.
New Zealand’s Oliver Leydon-Davis and Anona Pak will be the first representatives once again, as their campaign gets underway on day one. The pair are hoping to qualify for the rescheduled Tokyo 2020 Games and looking to collect valuable World Ranking points over the two weeks in their highest ranked tournaments yet. In the first round, they’ll face German duo, Mark and Isabel.
- Oliver Leydon-Davis/Anona Pak (NZL) vs Mark Lamsfuss/Isabel Herttrich (GER)
New Zealand’s Abhinav Manota returned to the top of the Oceania podium in Ballarat last year, following his triumph in 2018. In Thailand’s second week, he will be up against the highly experienced and world number 37, Brice Leverdez, in the first round.
- Abhinav Manota (NZL) vs Brice Leverdez (FRA)
Manota will also be in doubles action alongside fellow compatriot, Oliver Leydon-Davis. The aspiring Olympians stunned the Australian duo of Sawan Serasinghe and Matthew Chau (who represented Australia at the Rio 2016 Games) in Ballarat last year to boost their World Ranking and earn their first Oceania title together. Their campaign starts against the younger and lower ranked (95, to their 67) pairing from India:
- Abhinav Manota/Oliver Leydon-Davis (NZL) vs M.R.Arjun/Dhruv Kapila (IND)
Four-time Oceania champions and world number 26 duo from Australia (Gronya and Setyana) have been desperate to return to international action following the incredible progress they made in 2019 – winning the YONEX Canada Open, YONEX-Sunrise Nepal international Challenge and the 2019 YONEX/K&D Graphics International Challenge, in the months before COVID-19 brought a halt to the international calendar. They received a walkover into the second round following the withdrawal of Japanese second seeds, Mayu and Wakana. They will have to await the results between Canada’s and Malaysia’s match up to start their campaign on Thursday.
- Gronya Somerville/Setyana Mapasa (AUS) vs Rachel Honderich/Kristen Tsai (CAN) OR Chow Mei Kuan/Lee Meng Yean (MAS)