Nguyen Thuy Linh, Vietnam’s number one badminton player. Photo by BWF
Nguyen Thuy Linh, Vietnam’s number one badminton player, defeated top Indonesian player and world number eight Gregoria Mariska Tunjung at the 2023 China Open on Tuesday.
Tunjung is 18 places higher than Linh in the world rankings. Last month, she advanced to the quarterfinals of the World Championships in Denmark where she lost to world number two Akane Yamaguchi of Japan. Meanwhile, Linh was knocked out in the first round.
However, Tunjung was unable to maintain her form when she faced Linh in Changzhou, China on Monday morning. She showed signs of fatigue and made many mistakes, which gave Linh the advantage.
In the first set, Linh led 16-8 and although Tunjung tried to close the gap to three points, an error halted his momentum and Linh went on to win 21-15.
Tunjung continued to make mistakes in the second set while Linh remained precise and quick in her movements. When the score was 8-6, Linh scored seven straight points, almost half of which were missed shots by Tunjung. The Indonesian player tried to come back with five consecutive points, but Linh still won 21-14 and took the overall victory 2-0.
Linh will face world number 9 Han Yue in the second round. The Chinese player beat world number 12 Pornpaweee Chochuwong of Thailand in the first round.
In two meetings with Han, Linh has lost both, at the 2021 World Championships and the 2019 Thailand Open.
After being eliminated early at the 2023 World Championships, Linh returned to Vietnam and won the national championship.
The 2023 China Open, which will take place from September 5 to 10, is part of the World Tour Super 1000, which can help Linh accumulate more points to aim for Paris Olympic qualification next year.