Dechapol and Sapsiree deliver again

Dechapol and Sapsiree deliver again

Thai mixed doubles stars rally to victory

Dechapol Puavaranukroh and Sapsiree Taerattanachai pose with their gold medals and trophy after winning the Japan Open 2022. (Photo: badminton photo)
Dechapol Puavaranukroh and Sapsiree Taerattanachai pose with their gold medals and trophy after winning the Japan Open 2022. (Photo: badminton photo)

Dechapol Puavaranukroh and Sapsiree Taerattanachai claimed their third title of the year and 15th of their mixed doubles career after winning the US$750,000 BWF Japan Open in Osaka on Sunday.

The Thai second seeds rallied to defeat third seeds Yuta Watanabe and Arisa Higashino of Japan 16-21, 23-21, 21-18 in the championship match of the World Tour Super 750 event at Maruzen Intec Arena Osaka.

It was their third title this year, following their victories at the German Open and the Singapore Open.

The Japanese held a 5-3 head-to-head record against the Thai duo ahead of Sunday's final, with their latest victory coming at the All England Open semi-finals in March.

However Dechapol and Sapsiree, who are currently No.1 in the world, got the better of their Asian rivals on their home soil, recovering after losing the first game to win the thrilling decider in an hour and 12 minutes.

Dechapol and Sapsiree took home the US$55,000 (approx 2,025,750 baht) winners' cheque while Watanabe and Higashino received $26,250 (958,125 baht).

"I would like to congratulate both Dechapol and Sapsiree for winning their third title of the year after regaining their No.1 status again in the past week," said Thai badminton chief Khunying Patama Leeswadtrakul.

"I was always confident that they would regain their best form and they showed it by beating the reigning Olympic champions yesterday [Saturday] in the semi-finals and also the Japanese pair, who are also one of their biggest rivals."

She added, "They did very well today, coping with all the pressure from the Japanese fans in the stadium and played so well that they eventually brought the title home."

Top seed Akane Yamaguchi of Japan beat third seed An Se-young of South Korea 21-9, 21-15 to capture the women's singles crown, just a week after retaining her world title in Tokyo.

In the men's singles competition, Japan's Kenta Nishimoto defeated fourth seed Chou Tien-chen of Taiwan 21-19, 21-23, 21-17.

Jeong Na-Eun and Kim Hye Jeong were crowned the women's doubles champions after they defeated fellow Koreans Baek Ha-Na and Lee Yu-Lim 23-21, 28-26.

In the men's doubles decider, China's Liang Weikeng and Wang Chang beat seventh seeds Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen of Denmark 21-18, 13-21, 21-17.

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