New Zealand badminton struggles continue

Last updated 07:50 04/04/2013

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New Zealand's struggles have continued at the Australian Badminton Open in Sydney.

Just one out of the six Kiwi combinations in action on the second day at the US$120,000 BWF Grand Prix Gold event have made it through to the second round, following an 0 from 4 record on the first day.

The solitary Kiwi winners were Kevin Dennerly-Minturn from Auckland and Waitakere’s Kritteka Gregory, who scored a straightforward 21-6 21-13 victory in the mixed doubles over Australians Gregory Sam and Vera Babenko in 19 minutes.

Their reward is a second round date with tournament top seeds and world No 9-ranked pair Markis Kido and Pia Zebadiah Bernadeth from Indonesia.

In the women’s singles, Southland’s Anna Rankin was beaten by world No 65 Yeni Asmarani of Indonesia 21-12 21-12 while the women’s doubles pairs of Rankin and Madeleine Stapleton (Waikato) were defeated by a Malaysian pair in straight games and Amanda Brown (Waikato) and Gregory lost to an Indonesian combination in straight games.

The other mixed pair of Michael Fowke (Waikato) and Emma Rodgers (Auckland) lost to Australians Luke Chong and Talia Saunders 21-10 22-20.

All four Kiwi men suffered first round singles defeats on Tuesday.

The tournament runs until finals on Sunday and is followed by the US$50,000 New Zealand Badminton Open at the North Shore Events Centre next week.

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