Kiwis Have To Fight Hard In Tahiti Tournament

Monday 22 April 2013, 12:32PM
By dave worsley

It’s been a mixed tournament for New Zealand players at the US$15,000 Tahiti Badminton International Challenge tournament in Punaauia, Tahiti with two Kiwi pairs through to semi-finals while some other players found themselves beaten by French opponents earlier in the event.

The two pairs through to the semifinals include the Waikato brother and sister combination of Oliver and Susannah Leydon-Davis in the mixed doubles plus Amanda Brown (Waikato) and Kritteka Gregory (Waitakere) in the women’s doubles.

Brown and Gregory had a hard battle in their quarter-final against Australians, Tara Pliven and Natasha Sharp winning by the narrowest of margins, 22-24 21-16 25-23 in a match which lasted an hour. A win will give them confidence as they go into the semi-finals against their French opponents.

Oliver and Susannah Leydon-Davis also had a good win in their quarter-final defeating Australian Olympian Glenn Warfe and Jacqueline Guan 19-21 21-11 21-7. They now play an unseeded pair in the semis, Dutchman, Rudd Bosch and Thai, Salakjit Ponsana.

Not so successful in the quarter-finals were Susannah Leydon-Davis and Emma Rodgers who lost 21-14 21-9 to the top seeded Canadian pair Nicole Grether and Charmaine Reid, while Anna Rankin (Southland) and Madeliene Stapleton (Waikato) who went down 21-19 21-23 21-11 to a French pair.

Earlier New Zealand national singles champion Michael Fowke had made the second round before falling to Frenchman, Thomas Rouxel 21-9 22-24 22-20 and Oliver Leydon-Davis and New Zealand-based English coach Tom Armstrong were beaten by a French pair in straight games in the first round.

US$15,000 Tahiti Badminton International Challenge

New Zealand results only (New Zealand unless noted)

Women’s doubles quarterfinals:
Nicole Grether/Charmaine Reid (Canada) bt Susannah Leydon-Davis/Emma Rodgers 21-14 21-9, Sashina Vignes Waran/Teshana Vignes Waran (France) bt Anna Rankin/Madeliene Stapleton 21-19 21-23 21-11, Amanda Brown/Kritteka Gregory bt Tara Pliven/Natasha Sharp (Australia) 22-24 21-16 25-23.
Mixed doubles quarterfinals:
Oliver Leydon-Davis/Susannah Leydon-Davis bt Glenn Warfe/Jacqueline Guan (Australia) 19-21 21-11 21-7