Bali: Denmark’s badminton star, Viktor Axelsen has won his first-ever Indonesia Open title on Sunday, defeating Loh Kean Yew of Singapore 21-13, 9-21, 21-13 in 59 minutes at the Bali International Convention Center.
Previously, Axelsen had advanced into the 2018 Indonesia Open final, but lost to current World No. 1, Kento Momota of Japan 14–21, 9–21.
The victory saw Axelsen extend his career head-to-head record against Loh to 5-0.
After the match, the Tokyo 2020 Olympic gold medalist admitted that he struggled a little bit against Loh, who was aggressive in the second game.
“In the second game, I was slower than Loh. He took the initiative to launch the quick attacks in the second game. I improved my game in the third game and won the match,” said Axelsen.
“It is an honor for me to be a champion here,” added Axelsen.
Axelsen pocketed prize money of US$59,500 for winning the BWF Super 1000 event, while Loh received US$28,900.
The success of winning the Indonesia Open would see Axelsen surged to World No. 1, replacing Kento Momota in next week’s BWF World rankings.
Meanwhile, all five Indonesia Open categories were evenly won by players from five different countries.
After winning last week’s Indonesia Masters, the 19-year-old An Se-young of Korea fended off a spirited challenge from No. 2 seed Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, where Intanon saved seven match-point, before losing to An 17-21, 20-22.
Bali proved to be a lucky place for women’s doubles No. 4 seeds Nami Matsuyama/Chiharu Shida of Japan, as they picked up their second titles in two weeks by beating Indonesia’s Tokyo Olympics gold medalists – Greysia Polii/Apriyani Rahayu 21-19, 21-19 in the final. Matsuyama/Shida overcame Jeong Na Eun/Kim Hye Jeong of Korea 21-9, 21-11 in last week’s Indonesia Masters final.
In the mixed doubles final, the No. 1 seeds Dechapol Puavaranukroh/Sapsiree Taerattaanachai of Thailand also won their second consecutive titles in two weeks by knocking off No. 3 seeds Yuta Watanabe/Arisa Higashino of Japan 21-12, 21-13.
The host country managed to win one title through men’s doubles World No. 1 Marcus Fernaldi Gideon/Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo when they beat the 2021 Indonesia Masters champions, Takuro Hoki/Yugo Kobayashi 21-14, 21-18.