Ireland’s Scott Evans win in the men’s singles at the Carlton Irish Badminton Open in Dublin yesterday was the first home victory in this competition for almost forty years.
It was an emotional win for Evans, a double Olympian, who made the final in 2008 and has reached six other European circuit finals without ever taking a win.
“I remember saying to my best friend Rob when I was 12 or 13 that if I was going to win only one tournament in my career, I’d want it to be the Irish Open,” said Evans after his straight sets win over the young French qualifier Lucas Corvee.
Although Evans was in the tougher side of the draw, he didn’t drop a set in the tournament, beating Corvee 21-19, 21-18 in the final.
Corvee had done brilliantly to make the final and right until the end, refused to give up, saving three match points before Evans finally closed out the match.
In the women’s final, Chloe Magee, who had won the mixed doubles with Karen Bing in 2007, was making her first appearance in a singles final.
After a long and exhausting season, including the London Olympics, the Donegal woman was foced to dig very deep indeed to beat the Spainiard Beatriz Corrales of Spain in the semi-finals.
In the final against 18-year-old Line Kjaersfeldt from Denmark, Magee struggled, trailing 10-18 in the opening game, but then underlined her fighting spirit when she pulled the score back to 20-20. She had a set point at 21-10, but failed to convert it. Kjaersfeldt then won the next two points to take the set 23-21.
Magee played with more drive in the second set, winning 21-18, but her rival always had the edge in the tie-breaker, winning 21-18 and taking her first singles title at this level.
Dutch players won all three doubles titles. In the men’s doubles, Jacco Arends and Jelle Maas of the Netherlands outsmarted Johannes Schoettler and Josche Zurwonne of Germany to win 21-14, 21-19.
That came after top seeds Samantha Barning and Eefje Muskens had a comfortable 21-12, 21-8 win over French pair Audrey Fontaine and Emilie Lefel in the women’s decider.
It was an especially good day for Barning who then paired up with Jorrit de Ruiter to win the mixed doubles in the final match of the day. They went toe-to-toe with their training partners Jacco Arends and Ilse Vaessen edging it at 22-20, 21-17 in a closely-fought match.
Carlton Irish Open, Baldoyle
Singles: Men – semi-finals: Scott Evans (Ire) (1) bt Lucas Claerbout
(Fra) 21-17, 21-18; Lucas Corvee (Fra) (Q) bt Sebastien Schoettler
(Ger) (Q) 18-21, 21-15, 21-16. Final: Evans bt Corvee 21-19, 21-18.
Women – semi-finals: Chloe Magee (Ire) (1) bt Beatriz Coralles (ESP)
(50) 21-18, 21-23, 21-12; Line Kjaersfeldt (Den) (6) bt Olga Konan
(Ger) 22-20, 21-19. Final: Kjaersfeldt bt Magee 23-21, 18-21, 21-18.
Doubles: Men – semi-finals: Johannes Schoettler/Josche Zurwonne (Ger)
(5) bt Christopher Coles/Matthew Nottingham (Eng) (4) 21-19, 21-17; Jacco Arends/Jelle Maas (Ned) (2) bt Robert Blair (Sco)/Bin Shen Tan
(Mal) 21-18, 21-19. Final: Arends/Maas bt Schoetler/Zurwone 21-14, 21-19.
Women: Samantha Barning/Eefje Muskens (Ned) (1) bt Sophie Brown/ Helena Lewczynska (Eng) 21-14, 21-11; Audrey Fontaine/Emilie Lefel
(Fra) (2) bt Jessica Fletcher/Alyssa Lim (Eng) 21-14, 21-15. Final:
Barning/Muskens bt Fontaine/Lefel 21-12, 21-8.
Mixed: Jorrit de Ruiter/Samantha Barning (Ned) (1) bt Jelle Maas/Iris Tabeling (Ned) (4) 21-14, 26-24; Jacco Arends/Ilse Vaessen (Ned) (3) bt Max Schwenger/Carla Nelte (Ger) (5) 21-16, 18-21, 21-17. Final: de Ruiter/Barning bt Arends/Vaessen 22-20. 21-17.