Thailand has hosted three consecutive badminton tournaments in a bio-secure coronavirus bubble, without spectators, to guard against the pandemic.
Axelsen, ranked fourth, couldn’t control his nerves — losing the first game 16-21 — his body language showing immense frustration as errors piled up and shots landed wide.
𝗧𝗥𝗜𝗩𝗜𝗔Anders Antonsen is the first player to beat @ViktorAxelsen in 3⃣7⃣9⃣ [email protected] 🇮🇩 was the la… https://t.co/e8wNNXVdOn
— BWF (@bwfmedia) 1612094105000
He managed to regroup to win the second game 21-5.
But in the decider Antonsen had all the right answers, triumphing 21-17 to claim the game and the hour-long match against an increasingly ruffled Axelsen.
HIGHLIGHTS | All Danish affair 🇩🇰 where No.1 seed Viktor Axelsen and No.2 seed Anders Antonsen vie for top honour… https://t.co/cPCdmVz6rZ
— BWF (@bwfmedia) 1612095579000
Antonsen is the only man to beat Axelsen in three weeks.
The women’s doubles was an all-Korean showdown with fourth-ranked Lee So-hee and Shin Seung-chan pushing sixth-ranked Kim So-yeong and Kong Hee-yong to three games over 92 minutes.
Lee and Shin lost the first game 15-21 before scrapping through to claim the second 26-24.
They had momentum early in the third game and were able to hold off a late resurgence from their opponents to win the decider 21-19.
In the men’s doubles, seventh-ranked Lee Yang and Wang Chi-Lin of Taiwan won their third title in three weeks.
They beat Indonesia’s Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan 21-17, 23-21 in 37 minutes.
Lee admitted the pair “were nervous coming in the finals here.”
“We were playing our idols. I thought: ‘oh my god, oh my god.’ Three titles is incredible,” he said.
Thailand’s third seeds Sapsiree Taerattanachai and Dechapol Puavaranukroh are also going for a trio of titles.
They are up against sixth-ranked South Koreans Seo Seung-jae and Chae Yoo-jung.