Badminton: Blair and Bankier win German Open

Scotland’s Robert Blair and Imogen Bankier capped a brilliant five days in Mulheim when they won the mixed doubles title at the Yonex German Open yesterday – a massive boost for the pair in Commonwealth Games year.
Robert Blair and Imogen Bankier. Picture: ContributedRobert Blair and Imogen Bankier. Picture: Contributed
Robert Blair and Imogen Bankier. Picture: Contributed

The unseeded Glasgow pair defeated Korean third seeds and world No 11s, Ko Sung Hyun and Kim Ha Na, by 21-15, 21-18 and their performance this week looks sure to lift them up from No 19 in the world rankings. Blair and Bankier set the early pace to lead 11-6 before the Koreans levelled at 12-12 but the Scots surged again to take the opener on their second game point.

They led 15-12 in the second before the Koreans again levelled, at 15-15. But Blair and Bankier stayed calm and went on to claim victory on their second match point after 45 minutes.

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It capped a fantastic week for the Scottish pair, who had already defeated England’s top seeds Chris and Gabby Adcock.

It also set them up for the challenges that lie ahead, starting with this week’s Yonex All England Championships in Birmingham, followed by next month’s European Championships in Russia and culminating with the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow and the World Championships in Copenhagen in July and August.