SUNCHEON: An Se-young clinched victory at the Korea Open Badminton Championships on Sunday, becoming the first home player to win the women’s singles at the event in seven years.
The 20-year-old defeated Thailand’s unseeded Pornpawee Chochuwong 21-17, 21-18 in a tightly fought final in Suncheon.
“After the tie, I could see Chochuwong had reached her physical limit,” An said after the match, according to Yonhap news agency.
“I sensed it was my chance and created situations so Chochuwong had to run a little more.”
She said she had never lost against Chochuwong, but added: “I feel the pressure to beat her again, so she’s not a comfortable opponent.”
“I analyse and study my opponent before going to bed the night before the game,” An said. “I think it paid off this time.”
The last time a home player won the women’s singles at the Korea Open was Sung Ji-hyun in 2015, though the annual event has been cancelled for the last two years because of the coronavirus pandemic.
In a rollercoaster men’s final, Weng Hongyang of China beat Indonesia’s third seed Jonatan Christie 12-21, 21-19, 21-15 to claim the title.
Christie — ranked eighth in the world and 148 places above Weng — powered through the opener with his searing smashes.
But Weng forced a third game and came out as the ultimate winner.