Lee ends title drought; triple crown for Oktila too
South Korea’s Lee Dong Seop ended a long drought for a gold medal in style, completing a triple crown in the men’s WH1 events at the Yonex Canada Para Badminton International that concluded in Ottawa on Sunday.
In a thrilling men’s singles WH 1 final, Lee overcame Germany’s world No. 2 Thomas Wandschneider 21-13, 21-17, in a repeat of the match at the Thailand Para Badminton International in July 2018 where Lee won his last gold medal.
The Korean, an Asian Para Games bronze medallist, then went on to capture the mixed doubles with Lee Sun Ae and the men’s doubles with Kim Jung Jun, both against fellow-Korean opponents at one of the qualifying events for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics.
Similarly, it was another triple joy for Indonesia’s World No. 1 Leani Ratri Oktila who lived up to her promise. Oktila, who recently celebrated her 28th birthday, won her women’s singles SL4 plus the doubles and mixed doubles.
“I hope to win all the three events here. Wish me luck,” the silver medallist at World Championships had said before the event.
The Indonesian easily won her women’s singles SL 4 final beating Japan’s Haruka Fujino 21-12 21-12. Earlier, she had captured the mixed doubles crown (SL 3 – SU 5) with compatriot Hary Susanto; the Indonesians had to fight their way past France’s Lucas Mazur and Faustine Noel 21-16 15-21 21-13.
Later, Oktila returned for the women’s doubles (SL 3 – SU 5) final with Khalimatus Sadiyah. Japan’s Noriko Ito and Ayako Suzuki made it a keen contest in the second game but could not stop the Indonesians who won 21-13, 21-18 in just 23 minutes.
First Singles gold of 2019
Japan’s World No. 3 Yuma Yamazaki captured her first singles win of the year after topping Turkey’s Emine Seckin in the women’s singles WH 2, giving the 2020 Paralympic hosts someone to cheer on. The Japanese player then joined forces with Sarina Satomi to take down Seckin and Germany’s Man-Kei To in the women’s doubles WH 1.
Meanwhile, India’s Tarun Tarun extended his good run of form and claimed the the men’s singles SL4 gold fighting past French rival and World no. 1 Lucas Mazur 21-18, 19-21, 21-17. For Tarun, it was an avenge of his loss to Mazur at the Fazza Dubai championships final.
Hong Kong’s Chan Ho Yuen once again beat close rival Kim Jung Jun of South Korea in the men’s singles WH 2 final – his third victory over the legend in their last four matches.
Overall Indonesia topped the medals tally with six medals that included five gold, while Korea, India and Japan had three golds each.