4 August, 2023
Sarina Satomi cemented her title credentials as she downed Man Kei-To in a battle of the top two WH1 seeds at the 4 Nations Para Badminton International on Friday.
Top seed and reigning Paralympic champion, Satomi defeated the Belgian second seed 21-9 21-11 in one of the first of Friday’s quarter-final encounters.
Joining the Japanese star in the last four is Swiss shuttler Cynthia Mathez, who defeated Guang-Chiou Hu 21-17 21-14 to set up a meeting against Satomi next.
Kwon Hyunah delivered a dominant display to defeat Canada’s Yuka Chokyu 21-0 21-12, while former world champion Sujirat Pookkham defeated 2022 world bronze medallist Henriett Koosz 21-8 21-14.
Home favourites Jack Shephard and Rachel Choong continued their fine form in the SH6 mixed doubles, downing rising American duo Miles Krajewski and Jayci Simon 21-16 21-16 to reach the final four.
Joining them in the final four are India’s Krishna Nagar and Nithya Sre Sumathy Sivan, who overcame Hector Jesus Salva Tunque and Rubi Milagros Fernandez Vargas 21-11 21-18.
Elsewhere, Choong came through a thrilling quarter-final in her singles campaign, battling past Egypt’s Yasmina Eissa 21-18 16-21 21-19 to set up a semi-final against Rina Marlina.
Marlina beat Rubi Milagros Fernandez Vargas in straight games to progress to the last four, with Giuliana Poveda Flores and Nithya Sre Sumathy Sivan also reaching the semi-final stage.
Despite mixed doubles disappointment, America’s Miles Krajewski impressed in a 21-13 21-13 win over former world champion Chu Man Kai that saw him safely reach the last four of the SH6 men’s singles.
Krajewski said: “I feel ecstatic, I feel an adrenaline rush from the win. It’s unbelievable how well I did – I didn’t think I was going to play that well against a World Champion.
“I was trying to remain calm. I knew I had a pretty good gap but I had to finish it off, because he can come back from however many points he is behind.
“I feel good going into my future matches, but I know they are going to be hard.”
Up next for the 18-year-old is Krysten Coombs, who beat compatriot Shephard 21-17 21-19 to reach the last four.
Meanwhile, Krishna Nagar demonstrated why he is the favourite to take gold as he cruised past Sivarajan Solaimalai 21-9 21-6 to set up a semi-final clash against Vitor Tavares, who saw off Charles Noakes in straight games.
Joining in with the home success was SL3 world No.1 Dan Bethell, who saw off Ukraine’s Oleksandr Chyrkov 21-12 21-10 to set up a semi-final meeting versus Mongkhon Bunsun.
He said: “I’m really happy with how I played today – it was really solid. Oleksandr has got such a strong attack, he’s a really powerful opponent, so I knew I had to be really on it with my defence.
“I’m feeling really happy with how I’m playing. I’ve settled into the tournament well, so hopefully we’ll have a good performance over the weekend.”
Thailand’s Bunsun prevailed in one of the toughest matches of the day in Sheffield, battling past Manoj Sarkar 23-21 15-21 21-19 to reach the last four.
Meanwhile, Pramod Bhagat defeated fellow Indian Nehal Gupta 21-18 21-18 to keep his campaign live, while another Indian player in the form of Kumar Nitesh edged past Daisuke Fujihara 21-17 17-21 21-19.
Bhagat was also in mixed doubles action, he and Manisha Ramadass defeating French stars Lucas Mazur and Fautsine Noel in their last eight battle.
In women’s SL3 singles action, Syakuroh Qonitah Ikhtiar eased her way into the last four with a hugely impressive 21-13 12-3 triumph versus Darunee Henpraiwan, while Mandeep Kaur defeated Parul Dalsukhbhai Parmar in an all-Indian battle.
Joining Kaur in the last four is her compatriot Manasi Girishchandra Joshi, who beat Celine Aurelie Vinot 21-13 21-17, while Turkey’s Halime Yildiz also progressed.
The 4 Nations is being held with special thanks to Yonex – the Official Equipment Partner of the 4 Nations Para Badminton International.
A full rundown of Friday’s results can be found here.