Jonatan Christie erases 9-point deficit for miraculous win over Viktor Axelsen in French Open semis

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Jonatan Christie (L) beat Viktor Axelsen in French Open semis. (photo: Shi Tang/Getty Images)
Jonatan Christie (L) beat Viktor Axelsen in French Open semis. (photo: Shi Tang/Getty Images)

Paris: After trailing by 9 points with 10-19 in the decider, World No. 7 Jonatan Christie of Indonesia mounted a fierce comeback to pull out a thrilling 7-21, 22-20, 21-19 win over former World No. 1 Viktor Axelsen of Denmark in the French Open semi-final on Saturday.

In the first set, Christie was pressured by Axelsen and also committed many mistakes to go down 7-21.

The second game was neck and neck as Axelsen tied the game at 20-20 before Christie survived the attacks from Axelsen to win 22-20.

In the deciding game, Christie was on the verge of losing the semi-final match after trailing by 9 points at 10-19. However, Axelsen started to show difficulties in his movements and Christie took advantage of Axelsen’s problem by not making any mistakes and by forcing Axelsen to move front and back to eventually reel off eleven consecutive points and won the decider 21-19.

Axelsen later posted on his Instagram to congratulate Christie and also revealed that he was having a muscle cramp at the end of the decider.

“Ouch. Tough day at the office. Left everything I had left out on court, but unfortunately wasn’t enough against a well-playing @jonatanchristieofficial . Well deserved. I will be looking forward to many good matches in the future!
It has been a long time since I’ve played this many matches over two weeks, and my legs simply gave up. I suffered heavy cramps especially in my right leg, but nothing serious and I’ll be good to go soon again. Time to rest up and then it’s back to training. Thanks for all your support.
Viggo”

 

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Ouch. Tough day at the office. Left everything I had left out on court, but unfortunately wasn’t enough against a well-playing @jonatanchristieofficial . Well deserved. I will be looking forward to many good matches in the future! It has been a long time since I’ve played this many matches over two weeks, and my legs simply gave up. I suffered heavy cramps especially in my right leg, but nothing serious and I’ll be good to go soon again. Time to rest up and then it’s back to training. Thanks for all your support. Viggo 今天输给了 Jonatan Christie。 Jonatan,谢谢今天的比赛。 我很期待下次跟你打比赛。比赛的时候我的腿出现了问题。不是什么严重的问题,只是 muscle cramps. (我不知道中文的名字😂) 现在要恢复然后就要开始准备下一个比赛。谢谢大家对我的支持!安赛龙 📸 @badmintonphoto_official

A post shared by viktoraxelsen (@viktoraxelsen) on

“All I did was pray and did not give up. At 10-19 I noticed Viktor was having muscle cramp. So I tried to play more patiently, play the rally and not directly attacking the opponent. In the first game I made a lot of mistakes. And in the second game I tried to play better than the first game,” said Christie.

Christie will play Chen Long of China who also orchestrated a 12-18 comeback in the second set to beat Anthony Sinisuka Ginting of Indonesia 21-19, 21-18.

“My head to head record against Chen Long is 0-7. I lost to him in last year’s French Open quarter-finals. I just want to try to do my best tomorrow,” added Christie.

Meanwhile, men’s doubles No. 1 seeds Marcus Fernaldi Gideon/Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo were one match away from winning their second World Tour 750 title in two weeks when they will take on unseeded Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty of India in the final on Sunday.

In women’s singles, Korea’s 17-year-old unseeded An Se Young pulled off a huge upset to enter her first final of the World Tour Super 750 tournament by beating No. 2 seed Akane Yamaguchi 21-17, 23-21.

An will face Rio Olympic champion Carolina Marin of Spain after Marin comfortably defeated No. 1 seed Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan 21-16, 21-9.

Another exciting final match-up will be between last week’s Denmark Open Champions No. 6 seeds Praveen Jordan/Melati Daeva Oktavianti of Indonesia against No. 1 seeds Zheng Si Wei/Huang Ya Qiong of China.

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