Kunshan: Denmark’s shuttlers had just made history on Sunday afternoon by beating 13-time Thomas Cup champions Indonesia in the 2016 Thomas Cup final. The homeland of Hans Christian Andersen, that famed writer of fairy tales, was living one of shuttlers’ great giant-slaying stories but for World No.13 Hans-Kristian Vittinghus, the moment of triumph brought him an unforgettable sensation.
“It’s a big honor for me to play the last match in the final,” said Vittinghus after he crushed World No.31 Ihsan Maulana Mustofa 21-15, 21-7 in 40 minutes to trigger celebrations in the Danish camp.
“I had dreamed about it since we came here last week. I appreciated that my teammates made me an opportunity to win this match. Bringing the Thomas Cup back to Denmark means a lot to us,” added Vittinghus.
After becoming 8-time runners-up in the world’s most prestigious badminton team tournament since its inception in 1949, Denmark finally clinched their maiden Thomas Cup title by beating Indonesia 3-2 in the final to become the first European country to lift the prestigious Cup after a 67-year wait.
World No.4 Viktor Axelsen set Denmark on a roll with a 21-17, 21-18 victory in 54 minutes over World No.7 Tommy Sugiarto in the first men’s singles match.
The 13-time champions Indonesia showed no mercy against Denmark when Mohammad Ahsan/Hendra Setiawan smashed past Mads Conrad Petersen/Mads Pieler Kolding 21-18, 21-13 to draw level at 1-1.
In the third match of the afternoon, Jan Jorgensen, who was rested and was said to experience a hip problem, fended off a late comeback by Anthony Ginting in the first set to win 21-17. The Dane went on a rampage that saw him roared past Anthony 21-12 in second game to put up Denmark 2-1.
But the Indonesians weren’t going to go down without a fight. Their 2015 Sea Games men’s doubles gold medalists Angga Pratama/Ricky Karanda Suwardi rallied to beat Kim Astrup-Anders Skaarup Rasmussen 21-16, 21-14 as Indonesia came back to even the tie 2-2.
In the final match, Hans-Kristian Vittinghus beat Indonesian Ihsan Maulana Mustofa in straight-set 21-16, 21-7 taking the final score to 3-2 in Denmark’s favor by sweeping all 3 singles matches in the final.
With this win, Denmark became only the fifth country after Indonesia, China, Malaysia and Japan to win the prestigious badminton team title.