Friday, February 16, 2018
TEXT BY DEV SUKUMAR | BADMINTONPHOTO
Spain held off a battling Turkey to enter the women’s team semi-finals at the 2018 European Men’s & Women’s Team Championships in Kazan today.
Spain were up 2-0 thanks to singles victories by Carolina Marin over Neslihan Yigit and Beatriz Corrales over Aliye Demirbag.
However, Ozge Bayrak brought Turkey back into the contest beating Sara Penalver Pereira 21-13 21-10 before Bengisu Ercetin and Nazlican Inci outplayed Elena Fernandez and Lorena Usle in the first doubles to make it 2-2 for Turkey.
But Marin and Corrales (featured image) came to Spain’s rescue, winning the fifth match over Yigit and Bayrak, 24-22 21-15 to ensure their team’s presence in the last four.
Spain will take on Germany, who blanked France 3-0, while in the top half, Denmark – 3-0 winners over England – take on Russia, who beat Bulgaria 3-1.
Denmark and Germany also reached the semi-finals of the men’s competition. Denmark were once again untroubled as they eased past Finland 3-0, while Germany had some trouble quelling Czech Republic 3-1.
The bottom half will see France take on England.
France were taken the distance by Russia. The French won their first two singles through Brice Leverdez and Lucas Corvee and the Russians won both their doubles through Vladimir Ivanov/Alexandr Zinchenko and Rodion Alimov/Ivan Sozonov.
It was down to the last match, and France’s superiority in singles once again saw them gain the edge. Lucas Claerbout ran roughshod over Shokhzod Gulomzoda 21-15 21-6 to see France through to the semi-finals.