Scalvini Debut Delight, Wonderful Wavre & Gummiarm Playoff Drama | IWT Malta Open

It was a tournament of firsts at the IWT Malta Open as Diego Scalvini, Gaëlle Wavre and Benoit Truc all won their first international racketlon singles titles.

Scalvini triumphed in the Men’s B Singles on his racketlon debut, blowing apart the competition on the badminton and squash courts.

Wavre needed a gummiarm victory en route to her first singles title as she emerged victorious from the Women’s B Singles box league.

Truc fought off a flurry of newcomers to get his hands on the first bit of racketlon silverware in the Men’s C Singles.

Elsewhere there was a third international Gummiarm Playoff in the Men’s +50 Singles. Richard Hobzik emerged victorious as he took on both Martyn Langston and Rafal Szlazak for glory.

Magnus Edby was the final singles winner from the weekend. The Swede backed up last month’s Nick Matthew Steel City Open victory by winning the Men’s +60 Singles crown.

Men’s B Singles – Super Scalvini Wins Rare Italian Racketlon Medal

Well, that is one way to make your racketlon debut. Italy’s Diego Scalvini tore apart the Men’s B Singles field in Malta, battling through three rounds and against three players with racketlon experience to win a phenomenal title on his debut.

Across his first two matches against Patrick Bürgi and Christian Börner, the Italian dropped a total of 12 points in badminton and squash. His proficiency across the middle two sports was the catalyst for his success, helping him in the final as well.

In the final, he took on Malta’s favourite Simon Spiteri. The Maltese man had battled past Kim Ljungberg-Jensen and Rafal Szlazak to set up a meeting with his doubles partner in the final.

It was a superb debut and a rare Italian racketlon medal for Diego Scalvini.

In the end, the Men’s B Singles final was a one-way affair. Scalvini dominated from start to finish, winning 21-11, 21-10, 21-13 to triumph by 29 points before tennis. It’s an eye-catching debut from Scalvini, who we hope will return to the Racketlon World Tour again in the future.

Poland’s Szlazak completed the podium after dismantling Börner in the bronze medal match.

The full Men’s B Singles results are available here.

Women’s B Singles – Gummiarm Triumph Helps Wavre to First Singles Title

Without a shadow of a doubt, the comeback result of the weekend goes to Gaëlle Wavre. The Swiss talent has won two Mixed Doubles titles with Nicolas Lenggenhager but never found silverware on the singles court before. That changed in Malta.

Wavre opened with a relatively straightforward victory against Sabrina Carew. With Katrin Maldre forced to withdraw, Wavre and Carew were joined by Zuzana Vancuríková in a three-way battle for the title. That became a two-player battle when Vancuríková defeated Carew, leaving a decider between her and Wavre.

A first career singles title for Gaëlle Wavre at the IWT Malta Open.

Vancuríková looked to be in control of the match. The Czech player won the first three sports 21-17, 21-13 and 21-19 to lead comfortably before the tennis. Eight points were all she needed for the title. Instead, what we witnessed was a gutsy performance from Wavre. The Swiss player held her nerve to win the tennis 21-7 and force a gummiarm. The comeback was completed as Wavre won the gummiarm to claim the title. A remarkable story in the Women’s B Singles.

The full Women’s B Singles results are available here.

Men’s B Doubles – Bürgi and Langworthy Battle to Victory

It was a long Friday afternoon for Patrick Bürgi and James Langworthy as they had to come through three tough matches in order to get their hands on the Men’s B Doubles title.

Their day began against Christian Börner and Calum Munro at the quarter-final stage. The duo lost the table tennis but took the badminton 21-7 and squash 21-14 to leave themselves needing seven on the tennis court, which they managed with ease.

Awaiting them in the semi-finals were top seeds Anna-Klara Ahlmer and Myriam Enmer. The two stars had finished second at the IWT French Open but would not enjoy similar success in Malta. Bürgi and Langworthy won the first three sports to win by 13 points and guarantee themselves a spot in the final.

Before facing off in the Men’s B Singles final, Diego Scalvini and Simon Spiteri had teamed up in the doubles. Two impressive victories, built around badminton and squash, had seen them advance to the final. On the way, they had impressively taken out No.2 seeds Graham King and Kim Ljungberg-Jensen.

Patrick Bürgi and James Langworthy reigned supreme in the Malta sunshine.

In the final, Bürgi and Langworthy were too much for the more inexperienced pair. Scalvini and Spiteri did win the middle two sports, but a 21-2 table tennis win for Bürgi and Langworthy was too much to overcome. In the end, the Swiss-British duo won by 10 points to secure a first title together as a pair.

King and Ljungberg-Jensen produced an impressive performance to beat Ahlmer and Enmer for the bronze medal.

The full Men’s B Doubles results are available here.

Mixed B Doubles – Kaptein and Langston Near Perfect On Way to Title

There were few title runs as impressive at this year’s IWT Malta Open as Kirsten Kaptein and Martyn Langston. The duo were imperious in their three matches, dropping just two of their 11 sets in the four-pair box league.

Canadian duo Sabrina Carew and Ben Anderson were their first victims before they followed that up with an eye-catching win over Katrin Maldre and Christian Börner.

Kaptein and Langston were only the No.2 seeds in this draw. Leading the category were Czech pair Zuzana Vancuríková and Richard Hobzik. Similarly to Kaptein and Langston, they flew through their opening matches to set up a showdown against the No.2 seeds for the title.

Kirsten Kaptein and Martyn Langston were dominant in the Mixed B Doubles in Malta.

It was a tight match through the first two sports. They split the table tennis and badminton, with the Czechs up by one point before squash. That’s where the match turned. Kaptein and Langston ruthlessly won the squash 21-11 before finishing it off with an impressive 13-3 tennis victory.

Maldre and Börner were the final pair on the podium. They took out debutants Carew and Anderson in the bronze medal match.

The full Mixed B Doubles results are available here.

Men’s C Singles – Truc Holds Off Newcomers to Win in Malta

The Men’s C Singles was an intriguing category to preview. Four newcomers were drawn in with Switzerland’s Benoit Truc in an intriguing proposition. In the end, though, the experience proved to be the key factor as Truc stopped the newcomers, losing just one set in the process. A fantastic first career title for Truc.

That loss set came in his tightest match, against Canada’s Ben Anderson. While Anderson lost against Truc, he won his other two matches against Sebastian Farrin-Thorne and Oliver Farin-Thorne. That left the Canadian with an impressive silver medal on his international racketlon debut.

A fantastic maiden singles trophy for Switzerland’s Benoit Truc.

In the battle between the Farrin-Thorne’s, it was Sebastian who won, thanks largely to a huge tennis set victory.

The full Men’s C Singles results are available here.

Seniors+50 Singles – Hobzik Triumphs in Gummiarm Playoff Drama

After appearing last year at the Swiss Open and Austrian Open, the Gummiarm Playoff appeared for the first time in 2022.

In contention this time was Richard Hobzik, Rafal Szlazak and Martyn Langston, who were battling for first place in the Men’s +50 Singles in Malta. Simon Spiteri was the odd man out after losing to all three of the above. The other three all won two matches and lost one.

Szlazak beat the former world champion, Langston, by two points in a bit of a shock result which made the Gummiarm Playoff a real possibility. Hobzik then went on to beat Szlazak and Langston then followed that up by taking out Hobzik.

In the Gummiarm Playoff itself, it was Langston who made the faster start, winning both of his table tennis points to lead. Those were the last points that he would score until stepping onto the tennis court.

Instead, it was Hobzik who picked up both badminton points, and one point in all of the other sports to secure the win with five total points. Szlazak’s lack of table tennis points proved costly. Despite winning both squash points and earning both a badminton and tennis point, he only managed four total points. Langston was the player who finished third on three points.

The full Seniors +50 Singles results are available here.

Seniors +60 Singles – Edby Makes it Back to Back Titles

Magnus Edby is well and truly back. Before last month’s Nick Matthew Steel City Open, we hadn’t seen the Swede since 2018. His comeback is in full flow now. Two tournaments, two titles. Six matches unbeaten.

In Malta, he might have looked more impenetrable than he did in Sheffield as well. Pawel Skrzeczkowski was his first victim. The Pole was dealt a tough contest in his first international racketlon match. Edby was ruthless, winning the first three sports to triumph before tennis.

The next match against Australia’s Calum Munro was a really interesting match. Munro was also making his international racketlon comeback after over a decade away from the tour. Munro would go on to win a silver medal in this category, but couldn’t overcome Edby. The Swede won the table tennis and squash to single figures to leave Munro with too much to do.

It’s back-to-back titles for Magnus Edby who is enjoying life back on the Racketlon World Tour.

Edby secured his title with a dominant victory over Graham King. The ever-present Swiss star was no match for the Swede. Edby is now a two-time champion on the Racketlon World Tour this year and will be an enormous threat at the FIR Racketlon World Championships in August this year – a tournament he has already entered.

The full Men’s +60 Singles results are available here.

The full report from the elite singles is available here while the elite doubles are available here.

Interested in competing in a Racketlon World Tour event? The full 2022 World Tour is available here with a number of tournaments already open for entry.

Sam Barker / FIR Media Officer

Share this post:

Our Instagram

Our Facebook