Ilker Tuzcu in action last year (credit Mark Phelan / Badminton Europe)

Tuzcu a chance at medals

10/17/2019 10:01 PM | |  Bobby Griffin (BEC)

Ilker Tuzcu made it through the singles and mixed doubles group stages to set up a chance at double medals in Denmark.

Disaster struck for Ilker Tuzcu in Turkey earlier this year, a hamstring muscle tear caused him to withdraw from his home tournament and spend months out with injury.

After winning the European Championships many times in the past, the top ten player could not have suffered the injury at a worse time, the first tournament in the Paralympic qualifying period.

After missing a few tournaments and crucial ranking points in singles and mixed doubles with partner Halime Yildiz, he is slowly on the comeback trail, picking up points in Basel at the Para badminton World Championships in August, and in Thailand last month.

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Glory in three games

On Wednesday it took a third game result over European rival Meril Loquette, a player ranked one place above the world number eight, to top SU5 men’s singles group F and set up a place in the last 16. 

He will fight against Thailand’s Pricha Somsiri for a place in the quarterfinal, where European champion Bartlomiej Mroz awaits the winner. If Tuzcu makes it, the match will be a repeat of the 2018 European Championships final.

In the SL3-SU5 mixed doubles, a similar three-game result was needed by Indian pair Kumar and Parmar to top the group and the Turkish duo went on to face the fifth seeds Japanese Tetsuo Ura and Nariko Ito in the last 16.

An incredible 15-21, 21-19, 22-20 win sees Tuzcu and Yildiz through to the quarterfinal to take on World Championships silver medalists Jan-Niklas Pott and Katrin Seibert (GER) tomorrow. 

For a full list of the Denmark Para badminton International 2019 entries, see tournament software here

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