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EURO CHAMPIONSHIPS: DENMARK DEMOLISHES DUTCH TEAM
April 18, 1998 (NEW SHUTTLENWS) - Defending champion Denmark got off to a
flying start at the European badminton team championships now underway in
Sofia, Bulgaria. In the first day of competition today, the Danes whitewashed
the Netherlands 5 matches to none, winning without dropping a single game.
Jens Eriksen and Marlene Thomsen staked the dominant Danes to a 1-0 lead in
the mixed doubles match when they beat Norbert van Barneveld and Lotte
Jonathans 15-8 and 15-3. Peter Gade-Christensen followed with an easy 15-3 and
15-4 men's singles victory over Gerben Bruijstens. Mette Pedersen then gave
the Danes an insurmountable 3-0 advantage when she defeated Lonneke Jansen
11-6 and 11-8 in the women's singles match.
Michael Sogaard and Jon Holst-Christensen beat Quinten van Dalm and Dennis
Lens 15-7 and 15-12 in the men's doubles match. Marlene Thomsen and Rikke
Olsen then completed the rout with a 15-6 and 17-15 women's doubles win over
Erica van den Heuvel and Monique Hoogland.
Sweden, Denmark's archrival in European badminton, got a scare from the
Germans who took the Swedes down to the last match before the outcome was
Germany took the early lead when Michael Keck and Nicol Pitro surprised Peter
Axelsson and Catrine Bengtsson 15-5 and 15-9in the mixed doubles opener. Then
Margit Borg equalized for Sweden when she whipped Katja Michalowsky 11-3 and
11-2 in the women's singles match. Henrik Bengtsson put Sweden ahead 2-1 with
his 15-8 and 15-12 men's singles win over Oliver Pongratz.
The Germans though would not surrender. Karen Stechmann and Kerstin Ubben
combined in the women's doubles match to upset Margit Borg and Catrine
Bengtsson 15-5 and 18-15. The Swedes and the Germans were now all knotted up
at 2 matches apiece.
The Swedes though had their world-class men's doubles pair of Peter Axelsson
and Par-Gunnar Jonsson ready. The vastly experienced Swedish combination did
not disappoint their teammates. Axelsson and Jonsson put out Michael Helber
and Bjorn Siegemund 15-10 and 15-6 to give the Swedes the victory.
The English side beat their Northern neighbors, Scotland, winning the first
three matches before dropping the last two. Joanne Goode and Donna Kellogg
opened up with a 15-7 and 15-11 women's doubles win over Sandra Watt and
Elinor Middlemiss. Julian Robertson and Nathan Robertson then defeated Russell
Hogg and Kenny Middlemiss 15-7 and 15-11 in the men's doubles match to put
England ahead 2-0.
After some tense moments, Julia Mann clinched for England in the women's
singles match. She came back from behind to beat Anne Gibson 8-11, 11-7 and
In the fourth match, the men's singles, Colin Haughton of England lost to
Bruce Flockhart 5-15, 15-12 and 10-15. Chris Hunt and Donna Kellogg lost the
mixed doubles match to the Scottish pair of Kenny Middlemiss and Elinor
In the other meeting in the championship group, Ukraine squeezed past Russia
3-2. Vladislav Druzchenko of Ukraine beat Victor Malutin 18-13 and 15-1 in
men's singles. Elena Nozdran and Victoria Evtoushenko lost to the Russian
women's doubles pair of Ella Karachkova and Marina Yakusheva 7-15 and 8-15.
Ukrainians Konstantin Tatranov and Valeri Strelkov were defeated in the men's
doubles match by Nikolai Zuev and Sergei Melnikov 14-18 and 4-15. Elena
Nozdran then kept the Ukrainin hopes alive with an 11-7 and 11-7 women's
singles win over Ella Karachkova. In the final match, the mixed doubles,
Druzchenko and Evtoushenko combined to beat Russians Zuev and Yakusheva 15-13
In Group 2 which consists of countries who did not qualify for the
championship group and who are competing to move into the top group for the
next European championships, Finland beat Poland 5-0, Switzerland beat Ireland
4-1, France beat Wales 4-1, and Bulgaria defeated Portugal 5-0 in the early
In a later session, Bulgaria beat France 4-1, Wales beat Portugal 3-2,
Switzerland beat Poland 3-2, and Finland beat Ireland 4-1.
Summary of Group 1 (championship group) results:
Denmark beat Netherlands 5-0, Ukraine beat Russia 3-2
Sweden beat Germany 3-2, England beat Scotland 3-2
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