UK Racketlon

Written by James Pope

European Dominance as British Hopes Fade

World Championships Day 2

Calum Reid was eliminated on a frenetic second day of the 2014 Racketlon World Championships as the tournament erupted through the quarter finals stage.  With the start of the Men’s D class, the continuation of all other classes and the final of the Girls U16’s it was guaranteed to be an action packed day played under warm sunshine.  As the morning rolled on, the Last 16 rounds of both the Elite draws bore no witness to how the day would unfold as the majority of the seeds progressed with ease, only Jermaine Manners’ defeat to Stellian Stankov from Bulgaria the blemish on the morning record in both the Men’s and Women’s Elite.  It was to be the evening session that would bring the shocks as first 4th seed Christoph Krenn (losing after squash to Michi Dickert) and then Calum, the number 2 seed losing to Kasper Jonsson.  Meanwhile, Jasper Ratzer progressed with ease waltzing past Joey Schubert whilst Stefan Adamsson was pushed hard through the first three sports by Stankov, edging a tight squash 21-19 before easing to the required 18 points on the tennis, but certainly for large portions of a brutal squash match Adamsson was pushed all the way by the Bulgarian.



Men’s Elite Semi-Finals 19:40 GMT

Ratzer Vs Dickert

Adamsson Vs Jonsson

With the late loss of number 1 seed and big tournament favourite Natalie Zeoli, the women’s draw has opened up with a number of young competitors looking for glory.  Christine Seehofer the number 2 seed who looks likely to take the Under 21’s title, faced a tough test against Nicole Eisler, including an epic squash match , but despite losing 23-25, Seehofer bounced back to take the sole point she needed on the tennis court.  Elsewhere Zuzana Kubanova eased past Anne Fischer wrapping up the tie before the tennis court.  Lillian Druve progressed to the semi finals with victory over Liseselot de Bleeckere, table tennis proving to be the difference between both ladies in an otherwise tight match with badminton (2 points), squash 4 points) and tennis (13-14) all proving to be great individual contest within their racketlon match.  Finally Bettina Bugl, who looks set for second in the Under 21’s also reached the semi finals with a win over Kann Geertsma, table tennis and tennis providing the edge she needed to ensure victory.  With Seehofer and Bugl representing the future of Ladies Racketlon, their performances here show the future is looking good, with Hannah Boden and Katie Birt (both Under 16s) hot on their heels.

Ladies Elite Semi Finals 18:15 GMT

Bugl Vs Druve

Kubanova Vs Seehofer

Elsewhere, Katie Birt (Eng) was crowned Girls Under 16s World Champion with victory over Hannah Boden (Eng).  Hannah developed a handsome lead with victories in the table tennis (21-17) and Badminton (21-2), but Katie struck back in the squash (21-10) and then reached the 21 points she needed for victory in the tennis (21-4) to take the title by 6 points.  The girls will meet to fight for 3rdplace in the Under 21’s tournament on Saturday morning.  Friday also saw a number of gumi arm wins and defeats from senior women’s to junior classes and in the evening bar, many a discussion was spent on just how you should play that dreaded point!

Amazingly, the World Championships are halfway completed, but they are just hotting up.  All 4 Elite semi-finals have a tasty look about them, the weather is set for a glorious day at the Surrey Sports Park , feel free to come down, spectators get in free and the quality of racketlon on show is bound to be exceptional.  Personally speaking I can’t wait!