- Chae Yu Jung / Seo Seung Jae became the only repeat mixed doubles Aussie champions during its Sydney era.
- Shi Yu Qi and Ou Xuan Yi / Liu Yu Chen took claimed their first Aussie titles, which makes it a second HSBC World Tour win each this year.
- An Se Young has appeared in every level of the HSBC World Tour this year. It was her fifth such final and she converted her third title.
By Aaron Wong, Badzine Correspondent live in Sydney. Photos: Luis Veniegra / Badmintonphoto (live)
Chae Yu Jung / Seo Seung Jae (pictured top) always looked on course to add a second Aussie title to their 2018 one, the first and last World Tour 300, as their toughest match was in the semi-final against the Tokyo Gold medallist Huang Dongping partnering 2019’s World Junior Champion Feng Yanzhe.
Chae/Seo exploited the inexperience and limited mixed doubles shot variety of Jeong Na Eun. Seo took on Jeong on a cross-court next exchange within the first few points and both would direct their offensive at her whenever rallies began to extend.
Try as they might, there was no second HSBC World Tour title for the Aimsaard sisters in two months nor a second career title at this level for Teo Ee Yi / Ong Yew Sin.
Benyapa Aimsaard / Nuntakarn Aimsaard (pictured above) had clearly done their homework with coach Kim Ji Hyun on their opponents Zheng Yu / Zhang Shuxian. The Thais knew that a big key to success would be defending with enough variation such that the taller but slightly slower Zheng would find the last shuttle out of reach.
This ploy worked in the first game but the Thais weren’t able to keep up the level of concentration required to execute it routinely. Zheng is best described as the latest “Matsumoto”, a gifted player who ends rallies both in the rear court as well as in the forecourt.
Today Zhang Shu Xian (pictured below) won her well-deserved very first HSBC World Tour women’s doubles title in her fourth final since 2019.
Shi Yu Qi (pictured bottom) demolished another of the new batch of players, taking the decider 21-5. This time it was at the expense of compatriot Lu Guang Zu’s becoming a repeat Aussie winner like the Koreans.
What was interesting was that Shi’s signature shots are effective even against his own teammate, who presumably has more practice against them than other opponents.
Shi threw not one but two racquets into the crowd to celebrate his victory.
Similarly, the very popular An Se Young put in a classy performance to end the dream run of Gregoria Mariska Tunjung, who was appearing in her first final at this level.
An was quicker in court coverage and recovery as well as shot production than the Indonesian, which spelled a predictable ending. That said, the crowd still delighted in Tungjung’s hairpin net shots because it forced An to prove her retrieval abilities.
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