2011 All News
England in final charge at Yonex Irish International
Rajiv Ouseph, who won the Scottish International title in Glasgow two weeks ago, is one win away from lifting the Yonex Irish International title.
Ouseph, who did the Scotland-Ireland double in 2008 to launch his climb up the world rankings, defeated Finland's Ville Lang 21-17 21-15 in the quarter-finals this morning.
And the third seed booked his final place by defeating Mathieu Lo Ying Ping 21-13 21-18 late this afternoon, repeating his straight games win over the Frenchman in Glasgow.
The only time Ouseph was behind was at 2-0 inthe first game but then he took control to book his final place against Polish second seed Przemyslaw Wacha, who knocked out Dutch seventh seed Dicky Palyama 21-19 15-21
Ouseph, Britain's highest-ranked men's singles player, is looking to move back into the world's top 30 after this weekend's performance. He is ranked No. 31 to Wacha's 32 but he has never beaten the Polish No. 1 in three meetings.
It was a good day for England with all four quarter-final hopes going all the way to the final, led by unseeded mixed doubles pair Marcus Ellis and Heather Olver.
They beat Mikkel Elbjorn and Mie Schjoett-Kristensen 21-18 21-16 in the last eight then edged out another Danish pair, Theis and Joan Christiansen, 21-19 22-20 to reach the final, where they will face Dutch duo Dave Khodabux and Selena Piek.
Olver then reached the final of the women's doubles with Mariana Agathangelou. The third seeds came from a game down to beat Sweden's Sanne Ekberg and Amanda Hogstrom 13-21 21-14 21-8 in the quarter-finals.
In the semi-finals they produced the England performance of the day by knocking out the top seeds and world No 16s Line Damkjaer Kruse and Marie Roepke of Denmark 21-16 21-14.
That will earn them the chance of a big ranking boost from No. 24 in the world as they chase an Olympic qualification place, as well as aiming to improve on last year's runners-up spot in Ireland.
In the final they will face the Loughborough-based Malaysian sisters Hui Ern and Hui Lin Ng, who knocked out second seeds Lotte Jonathans and Paulien van Dooremalen 15-21 24-22 21-14.
Ellis made it four finalists out of four for England after winning his men's doubles semi-finals with Peter Mills.
The unseeded pair, who were runners-up at the Scottish International having won the title there 12 months earlier, beat Denmark's third seeds Rasmus Bonde and Anders Kristiansen 21-17 12-21 21-12 in the last eight and then toppled second seeds Baptiste Careme and Sylvain Grosjean of France 21-17 21-17.
The England pair were always behind in the first game until they levelled at 16-16 before going on to win it with four points in a row from 17-17. In the second game they trailed 10-2 before recovering to lead 13-11 and after that were never headed.
Ellis is now bidding to match Chris Adcock's feat of two doubles titles in Ireland last year.
In the men's final they will face Polish top seeds Adam Cwalina and Michal Logosz.