BUKIT JALIL: It’s rare to see a couple travel the world and play good badminton together.
But that is the adventurous journey of mixed doubles shuttler Chris Adcock and his wife Gabrielle.
The couple tied the knot last September and are enjoying the best of both worlds.
Just a month after their marriage, the English pair won their first Super Series title in Hong Kong.
And on Thursday, the Adcocks stormed into the quarter-finals of the Maybank Malaysian Open after beating Germany’s Michael Fuchs-Birgit Michels 23-21, 16-21, 21-6 at the Putra Stadium in Bukit Jalil.
On Friday, the 25-year-old Chris and Gabrielle, a year younger, will face a stern challenge when they take on top seeds Zhang Nan-Zhao Yunlei of China for a place in the semi-finals.
Chris revealed that being a couple on the world badminton circuit is actually a boon as they can, after gruelling matches, take time off to clear their minds by going out together.
“It’s nice for us because we are a couple and we take time off to explore the city and take our minds off the competition for a while,” said Chris.
“It not only helps strengthen our relationship as a married couple but also our partnership on the court.
“We are chasing the same goals and it really drives us to do well in the sport. We always keep it professional on the court ... and have some fun.”
Chris and Gabrielle are ranked 10th in the world and have certainly stamped their place in the world circuit as a pair capable of beating anyone on their day.
Fans can expect strong performances from this loving couple this year – especially when they seek to become the first pair since Nathan Robertson-Gail Emms in 2005 to win at home – at the prestigious All-England in March in Birmingham.
Robertson-Emms have since retired.