The ongoing BWF World Tour Super 300 Barcelona Spain Masters is lacking in star power. But the two biggest stars in the tournament, former World Champions Viktor Axelsen of Denmark and Carolina Marin of Spain, have registered easy victories to charge into the second round.
Axelsen played a three-game match against Singapore’s Loh Kean Yew which he won 13-21, 21-14, 21-15 in 52 minutes. Next, the 2017 World Champion will take on France’s Brice Leverdez.
Marin, on the other hand, absolutely pummeled Russia’s Natalia Perminova 21-11, 21-8. In the second round, the three-time World Champion will take on Netherlands' Soraya de Visch Eijbergen on Thursday.
One slight upset on the second day of the event was the defeat of Chinese Taipei’s Wang Tzu Wei. He was defeated by France’s Lucas Corvee 21-19, 16-21, 21-16. It was a good day for the Danes though as both Jan O Jorgensen and Rasmus Gemke too won their matches to join their compatriot Axelsen in the second round.
Jorgensen’s victory was against Chang Ching-Sheng of Taiwan 21-14, 21-16 while Gemke put away Ukraine’s Artem Pochtarov 21-8, 21-15. One disappointment though for Denmark was the crashing out of Hans-Kristian Solberg Vittinghus due to his defeat against the man Axelsen will face on Thursday, Leverdez.
Malaysia’s Daren Liew defeated India’s former Asian Championships bronze medalist HS Prannoy 21-18, 21-15 while third-seeded Kidambi Srikanth got the better of his compatriot Subhankar Dey 23-21, 21-18.
In the women’s singles, the most prominent ladies in the tournament, Marin, and India’s Saina Nehwal were joined in the second round by the only two remaining seeded contestants – both belonging to Thailand – Pornpwee Chochuwong and Busanan Ongbamrungphan.
Third-seeded Busanan defeated England’s Chloe Birch 21-10, 21-10 while sixth-seeded Chochuwong got the better of Belgium’s Lianne Tan 21-15, 21-10. So, all four seeded players in the women’s division have moved into the second round.
There were a couple of upsets in the doubles categories also. The third-seeded husband-wife couple of Chris and Gabrielle Adcock lost to Germany’s Jones Ralfy Jansen and Kilasu Ostermeyer 21-19, 23-21.
The other mild upset in the mixed doubles category was eighth-seeded Wang Chi-lin and Cheng Chi Ya losing to the Russian pair of Vladimir Ivanov and Ekaterina Bolotova 21-13, 21-17.