Enmer, Andre, Pennanen & Penttanen Win Doubles Titles | IWT French Open

A gummiarm victory helped French pair Myriam Enmer and Damien Andre win the Mixed Doubles title on the opening day of the IWT French Open.

Enmer and Andre beat Anna-Klara Ahlmer and René Lindberg with a gummiarm and sensational tennis comeback to triumph at their home tournament.

Elsewhere, Joel Pennanen and Luka Penttinen won a dramatic Men’s Doubles title at the IWT French Open as they defeated René Lindberg and Max Plettenberg by a single point in a high-quality final.

This is a first career elite title of any kind for both Damien Andre and Joel Pennanen, while it’s a first Mixed Doubles title for Myriam Enmer.

Men’s A Doubles – Maiden Title for Pennanen on Dramatic Day

The FIR World Tour began with a bang as the Men’s Doubles saw a number of dramatic moments on day one of the IWT French Open.

Following on from Finland’s success at last year’s World Doubles Championship, Joel Pennanen and Luka Penttinen finished the day as the champions, winning in a phenomenal final. We’ll get to that in a bit, as the day saw eye-catching action from the very first round.

After winning the world title last year with Calum Reid, all eyes were on how Leon Griffiths would fare in his season opener alongside James Langworthy. What followed was a brilliant showdown with Swedish-German pair René Lindberg and Max Plettenberg. The Brits trailed by seven heading to tennis but won the set 21-14, forcing a gummiarm.

Lindberg had already played – and lost – a gummiarm earlier in the day in the Mixed Doubles. He was determined not to do that again and he helped guide his partner into the semi-finals by defeating the British pair and knocking out the world champion.

Their semi-final match was against top seeds Matthew Davidson and Nicolas Lenggenhager. The British-Swiss pairing had romped through their opener against Alex Du Noyer and Jack Bishop but found Lindberg and Plettenberg too hot to handle. The Swede and the German rolled into the final with a comfortable +12 win.

Many players throughout the day wore Yellow in Blue colours to show their support for Ukraine #StandWithUkraine

Things were relatively straightforward for the eventual champions Joel Pennanen and Luka Penttinen. The Finns recorded a +17 win against Koen Hageraats and stand-in partner Guidi Weijel in their opener before battling to a hard-fought +7 win over home favourites Laurent Cocriamont and Anthony Duthuillé in the semi-finals.

The final was a nerve-jangling contest from start to finish. Lindberg and Plettenberg took the table tennis 21-15 before the Finns retaliated with a 21-13 badminton set. A brutal squash set went the way of Lindberg and Plettenberg, leaving them three points up before tennis. The day had already seen two gummiarms and at 20-17, we were just two points away from another.

In the end, it was Pennanen and Penttinen who triumphed. They won by a single point to claim a memorable first title of the year. For Penttinen, it is a third Men’s Doubles title as he continues to add to his growing international trophy cabinet. The day belongs to Pennanen though. The young Finn picks up his first elite title and will now look to build on that heading into the singles at the weekend.

The bronze medal went to Davidson and Lenggenhager. The full Men’s A Doubles results are available here.

Mixed Doubles – Gummiarm Magic as Enmer and Andre Triumph on Home Soil

Across the back half of 2021, it felt like was saw a huge amount of gummiarms at racketlon’s elite level. So it was of little surprise to see the FIR World Tour’s first elite match of the season end in one.

The match in question saw France’s Myriam Enmer and Damien Andre take on Sweden’s Anna-Klara Ahlmer and René Lindberg. The Swedes were the top pair and looked to be heading towards a fairly simple victory after squash. The match changed with a breathtaking tennis display from the French.

Ahlmer and Lindberg needed just eight points on the tennis court to secure a win to kick-start their season. Instead, Enmer and Andre produced a masterclass to win 21-7 and force a gummiarm. Buoyed on by home support, they completed the sensational comeback to win and get a victory on the board.

Ahlmer and Lindberg’s hopes of forcing a gummiarm playoff were dashed in their second match. Nicole Eisler and Nicolas Lenggenhager were the third pair in the draw and the Swiss unit made quick work of the Swedes. They won the first three sets to triumph by 25 points and win before tennis.

That left France versus Sweden in the final. Solid table tennis and badminton opened up a 10 point lead for Enmer and Andre. That lead was completely eradicated on the squash court, as Eisler and Lenggenhager won 21-11 to leave a full set of tennis to decide the champions.

Enmer and Andre had looked imperious on the tennis court in their first match. That didn’t change in the final. They completely outclassed the Swiss pair from start to finish, winning 21-7 again to both earn their first elite Mixed Doubles crown.

The full results from the Mixed Doubles are available here.

The full report for the amateur doubles will be available on Monday.

Sam Barker / FIR Media Officer

Image Credit / Joss Gade

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