Mixed doubles duo look for badminton three-peat

Mixed doubles duo look for badminton three-peat

Pornpawee and women's doubles pair eliminated at BWF World Tour Finals

Thailand’s Pornpawee Chochuwong plays a shot in her semi-final match against Carolina Marin on Saturday at Impact Arena. (Badminton Association of Thailand via AFP)
Thailand’s Pornpawee Chochuwong plays a shot in her semi-final match against Carolina Marin on Saturday at Impact Arena. (Badminton Association of Thailand via AFP)

Thai mixed doubles stars Dechapol Puavaranukroh and Sapsiree Taerattnachai will be looking for their third tournament victory in as many weeks when they play in the championship match of the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals in Bangkok on Sunday.

The Thai duo, seeded first in the tournament and ranked third in the world, cruised through their semi-final against 15th-ranked Thom Gicquel and Delphine Delrue of France 21-15, 21-17 on Saturday evening at Impact Arena, Muang Thong Thani.

They will face the winner of Saturday’s late match that pitted Seo Seung-jae and Chae Yu-Jung of South Korea against Goh Soon Huat and Lai Shevon Jemie of Malaysia.

Dechapol and Sapsiree have already won the Yonex Thailand Open and the Toyota Thailand Open, the first two of the three badminton showcases staged in Bangkok this month.

The mixed doubles pair are the last Thais standing this week, as Pornpawee Chochuwong’s impressive run ended on Saturday with a straight-sets semi-final loss to Spanish veteran Carolina Marin. The country’s women’s doubles hopefuls also were eliminated.

Marin, the reigning Olympic champion, needed just 40 minutes to defeat her Thai rival 21-13, 21-13. Pornpawee, who is ranked 13th in the world, has faced Marin eight times in her career and defeated her only once.

Marin and Taiwanese top seed Tai Tzu-ying will play for the women’s singles title on Sunday for the third week in a row, but Tai has yet to beat the Spaniard. Tai booked her spot earlier Saturday with a straight-sets (21-18, 21-12) victory over the up-and-coming teenager An Se-young of South Korea.

Pornpawee, 23, turned heads this week by defeating compatriot Ratchanok Intanon as well as Tai during a strong performance in the round-robin portion of the event.

In the women’s doubles, Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Rawinda Prajongjai saw their run end as the South Korean duo of Kim So Yeong and Kong Hee Yong prevailed 21-11, 12-21, 21-16.


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