India’s Arvind Bhat sprang a surprise, easing past fourth seed Jen Hao Hsu of Chinese Taipei in straight games 21-14, 21-17 to storm into the second round of the 2012 Bitburger Open, being held in Saarbruken, Germany.
The 79th ranked Indian made a mockery of the rankings, asserting his authority over the world number 32 from the word go and never allowed his much-fancied opponent to settle down.
The 33-year-old Bangalore boy wrapped up the match in just 34 minutes.
Another Indian, Anup Sridhar also advanced to the second round. Anup, who is currently languishing at a world ranking of 136, and had reached a career high ranking of 24 in 2008, had to battle hard against Belgium’s world number 177 before prevailing 21-12, 17-21, 21-12 in a contest that lasted 4o minutes
Coincidentally, both Arvind and Anup would meet French opponents in the second round. Arvind will clash with 88th ranked Matthieu Lo Ying Ping, while Anup will lock horns with world number 48 Brice Leverdez.
It may be mentioned here that India’s Chetan Anand (the then fourth seed) had won the 2008 edition of the Bitburger Open, edging out (the then seventh seed) Arvind Bhat 23-25, 24-22, 23-21 in an all-India affair.
In fact, Chetan also became the first Indian to win a men’s singles Grand Prix crown. The Bitburger Open was a memorable moment for Indian badminton fans as the pair of V Diju and Jwala Gutta also clinched the mixed doubles title.