New Zealand’s Edward Lau lit up the hall this morning as he topped of his impressive run to tonight’s final in an exhilarating three game thriller. Lau is on track to follow in the footsteps of last year’s champion, Oscar Guo (also from New Zealand), who extended a legacy across the men’s singles draw as the reigning junior champion at the time went on to win the open event. Lau will join fellow compatriot and 2018 champion, Abhinav Manota, in tonight’s final.
- Edward Lau (NZL) vs Milain Lohith Ranasinghe (AUS) 19-21 21-14 21-18
- Abhinav Manota (NZL) vs Nathan Tang (AUS) 21-16 21-8
“I was one game down so I had to increase my focus on taking the rest of the match one point at a time. I don’t have a strategy for tonight yet, I just want to play my best game against Manota”, says Edward Lau.
The top two seeds celebrated an impressive run into this evening’s final as they have defeated every opponent in two games so far. Tournament favourite, Wendy Chen, looked in fine form as she saw off the challenge from Kurniawan, who has dispatched the third and fifth seeds on her way to the semi-final, taking just 22 minutes to succeed.
Wendy will join Louisa Ma on court tonight in a heated contest as both player’s search for a potential Olympic qualification spot.
- Hsuan-Yu Wendy Chen (AUS) vs Sylvina Kurniawan (AUS) 21-11 21-5
- Louisa Ma (AUS) vs Tiffany Ho (AUS) 21-17 21-19
Tournament favourties and world number 26 pairing Gronya Somerville and Setyana Mapasa eased their way into the final, where they will be competing for their fourth consecutive title at the continental championships.
Only the New Zealand second seeds, Sally Fu and Alyssa Tagle, can prevent Somerville and Mapasa from extending their impressive run, after they succeeded against Australian youngsters, Kaitlyn Ea and Majan Almazan.
- Setyana Mapasa/Gronya Somerville (AUS) vs Tiffany Ho/Jodee Vega (AUS) 21-10 21-13
- Sally Fu/Alyssa Tagle (NZL) vs Majan Almazan/Kaitlyn Ea (AUS) 21-18 21-16
Manota booked his second finals appearance of the evening in the men’s doubles alongside Oliver Leydon-Davis. The pair will be looking to make amends for last year’s shock exit in the second round, as they booked their first continental championships final together as a pair. They will be taking on Rio 2016 Olympians and four-time Oceania champions (2015-2018) Matthew Chau and Sawan Serasinghe later this evening.
The players are no strangers to each other, with Sawan Serasinghe knocking the pair out of last year’s draw with Eric Vuong, followed by Chau and Serasinghe’s triumph over Leydon-Davis and his previous partner (Kevin Dennerly-Minturn) in the 2014 semifinal and 2015 final.
- Oliver Leydon-Davis/Abhinav Manota(NZL) vs Ying Xiang Lin/Kai Chen Teoh (AUS) 21-12 21-16
- Matthew Chau/Sawan Serasinghe (AUS) vs Lukas Defolky/Raymond Tam (AUS) 21-10 21-17
Finally, Australia’s Tran and Sylvina put on another inspiring performance to surge past the eighth seeds from New Zealand. In yesterday’s quarterfinals, they brought an end to Leydon-Davis’ and Anona Pak’s campaign, dispatching the only other remaining New Zealander’s in this morning’s game.
Somerville doubled up on her final appearances once again as she joined forces with Simon Leung to see off the challenge from fellow compatriot’s Raymond Tam and Jessica Lim. The reigning champions will be searching for the title and attached World Ranking points tonight as they hunt for qualification to the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
- Simon Wing Hang Leung/Gronya Somerville (AUS) vs Raymond Tam/Jessica Lim (AUS) 21-12 21-14
- Tran Hoang Pham/Sylvina Kurniawan (AUS) vs Dylan Soedjasa/Alyssa Tagle (NZL) 21-13 21-12
View all statistics and results from the semifinals on Tournament Software.
The finals start at 5pm tonight, local time (GMT+11).