Club La Santa Open Draw Throws Up ‘Groups of Death’

Club La Santa Open 2019

The draw for the Club La Santa Open has unleashed a ‘Group of Death’ in both the Men’s A and Women’s A categories.

In the Women’s A, three of the World’s top-10 – Kirsten Kaptein, Zuzana Severinova and Anna-Klara Ahlmer – have been drawn together. Joining them in the group is former World No.2 Izzy Bramhall.

Elsewhere in the Men’s A, top seed and World No.2 Morten Jaksland will be facing Thailand Open finalists Arnaud Genin and Jesper Hougaard.

Second Seed Kaptein faces tough draw at Club La Santa Open

Drawn into the proverbial ‘Group of Death’, Kirsten Kaptein faces a huge challenge if she is to live up to her billing as the second seed. The World No.5 is joined in Group B by World No.7 Severinova, World No.10 Ahlmer and World No.16 Bramhall.

With Kaptein suffering a losing head-to-head record* against all three women, it could fall on one of the unseeded players to progress to the final. Who that will be though, is anyone’s guess.

Severinova holds a positive 1-0 winning record over Ahlmer, winning by eight points at last year’s World Singles Championships. However, the pair also met in the World Teams Championships where they tied. Furthermore, Ahlmer was still in the early stages of her return from a lengthy injury.

The Czech player has not faced Izzy Bramhall in a singles match but Bramhall has played Ahlmer once before. They played in the quarter-finals of the 2016 Latvian Open, with Bramhall winning relatively convincingly.

Anna-Klara Ahlmer has been drawn in the Women’s A “Group of Death” (Image: Inge Omey)

Group A, while not quite a ‘Group of Death’ is still loaded with talent. World No.3 Nicole Eisler is the top seed and is joined by Margaux Randjbar and Women’s B World Champion Natalia Prado.

Prado, entered as a wildcard, is the in-form player and is currently riding a 13-match unbeaten streak. However, this tournament marks the first time she is making the step up from Women’s B to Women’s A.

Margaux Randjbar is a more familiar face in the Women’s A category as she begins her season in Lanzarote. Randjbar and Prado will have to be at their best to topple top seed Eisler and reach the final.

The winners of each group will go on to contest the final.

Club La Santa Open 2019
Morten Jaksland and Kresten Hougaard could meet in the final of the Club La Santa Open again (Image: Inge Omey)

Thailand Open finalists join Morten Jaksland in ‘Group of Death’

Top seed Morten Jaksland has been dealt a tough draw in the Men’s A as Thailand Open finalists Arnaud Genin and Jesper Hougaard join him in Group A.

This will mark the first career meeting between Jaksland and Genin. The in-form Frenchman has won both FIR World Tour events so far in 2019 and is looking to pull off his biggest career win so far by beating World No.2 Jaksland.

The two will also have to contend with experienced racketlon star Jesper Hougaard, who marked his return at the Thailand Open in January.

Arnaud Genin and Jesper Hougaard will meet for the second time this year (Image: Frank Kleiber)

The other group sees World No.3 Kresten Hougaard drawn with inexperienced pair Malte Thyregod and Josselin Gade. For Thyregod this is a third Men’s A event while it is Gade’s first since 2015.

Hougaard is the strong favourite to progress from Group B but all eyes will be on the other section to see who will come through the ‘Group of Death’ and reach the Club La Santa final.

The IWT Club La Santa Open will take place at Club La Santa, Lanzarote. from the 2nd-4th March 2019

The Club La Santa live draw can be watched here.

The full Club La Santa draws are available here.

The full FIR World Tour calendar is available here.

Sam Barker / FIR Media Officer

Image Credit / Inge Omey

*All head-to-head records and statistics accurate from January 1, 2014, onwards

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