Christine Seehofer retained her Mixed Doubles world title alongside Morten Jaksland at the World Doubles Championship in Prague.
They beat Stine Jacobsen and Cornelius Radermacher in the final, preventing Jacobsen from winning a fourth world title of the year.
This is the third time in a row that Seehofer has won this event, while Jaksland won it for the first time – just before having to rush off for his flight home.
Seehofer and Jaksland’s Route to the Final
After receiving a bye through the first round, Seehofer and Jaksland began in the quarter-finals against Myriam Enmer and Max Plettenberg.
The table tennis and squash were extremely close, with the top seeds winning 21-18 and 21-19. That doesn’t tell the full story though, as Plettenberg pulled out a jaw-dropping squash set, battling from 11-0 down to only lose to Jaksland by two points.
Badminton was the decisive sport, with the 21-11 victory creating enough distance to leave Seehofer and Jaksland needing just seven on the tennis court.
On paper, their semi-final was a tougher contest against Amke Fischer and Leon Griffiths. After a gruelling day of back-to-back matches, neither Fischer nor Griffiths was at their best. They had already had to battle past both Zuzana Severinová and Georg Stoisser, and then Anna-Klara Ahlmer and Henrik Mustonen just to reach the semi-finals. Seehofer and Jaksland masterfully capitalised.
A ruthless 21-10 table tennis set coupled with a 21-5 squash masterclass left Fischer and Griffiths in serious trouble. A 21-9 badminton set repaired some of the damage but it was already too late. Seehofer and Jaksland were into the final after needing just seven points in tennis.
Jacobsen and Radermacher’s Path to the Final
Stine Jacobsen has been the star of the 2021 FIR World Tour. She teamed up with regular partner Cornelius Radermacher and the pair ran all the way to the final, defeating two seeds in the process.
After a first-round walkover, their campaign began against No.2 seeds Bettina Bugl and Kresten Hougaard. Bugl was due to play with Marcel Weigl and Hougaard with Astrid Reimer-Kern. However, with both players pulling out, the two were paired up together as an alternate.
They got off to a fast start as well, winning the table-tennis 21-13. The match was won in the middle two sets though. Jacobsen and Radermacher won the badminton 21-10 and squash 21-7 to roll into the lead. That left them needing just five on the tennis court, which they managed with ease.
The other quarter-final in the bottom half was one of the best matches of the event. Martina Meißl and Lukas Windischberger took on Natalie Paul and Christian Wiessner. The match ebbed and flowed throughout but by the tennis, it was Meißl and Windischberger that needed just 14 points.
At 19-10 down, it looked unlikely that the Austrian pair would get the victory. A late flurry of points saved the day for them. Eventually, they got the 14-20 victory, preventing the potential gummiarm on a deciding point.
The semi-final against Jacobsen and Radermacher was an equally tight affair. The Dane and German won the first two sports by six and eight to move 14 ahead. That lead was cut down to just five points as the Austrians triumphed comfortably in the squash. The tennis was neck-and-neck throughout, but in the end, it was Jacobsen and Radermacher who emerged victorious, winning 17-15 to book their spot.
Stine Jacobsen has become very accustomed to reaching World Championship finals this year but for Cornelius Radermacher this was a landmark moment. He was into the first elite doubles final of his career.
Seehofer and Jaksland Overpower Jacobsen and Radermacher in the Final
Seehofer and Jaksland had looked imperious on the table tennis table all weekend and that continued in the final. They raced to a 21-11 victory to establish an early lead. It didn’t last long.
Jacobsen and Radermacher returned the favour on the badminton court. They dominated the set to win 21-12, erasing almost all of the lead. But Seehofer and Jaksland are two of the best squash players on tour. They produced a 21-11 squash victory to open the lead back up to 11 points.
That was too much for Jacobsen and Radermacher to overcome at tennis. Seehofer and Jaksland won 11-8 to secure the Mixed Doubles World Championship title.
That result means that Christine Seehofer is now a three-time Mixed Doubles World Champion. What’s even more impressive is that she’s achieved this with three different partners; Lukas Windischberger, Dan Busby, and now Morten Jaksland.
For Jaksland, this is the second time he has won an elite doubles world title. Two years ago he triumphed in the Men’s Doubles with Kresten Hougaard and now he can add a Mixed Doubles trophy to his cabinet.
Amke Fischer and Leon Griffiths completed the podium after defeating Meißl and Windischberger by five points.
The full Mixed Doubles results are available here.
The full report from the Women’s Doubles and Men’s Doubles is available here.
A full report from the Juniors and Seniors categories will be available in the coming days.
Sam Barker / FIR Media Officer
Image Credit / Filip Rejthars