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International stars warm up for YONEX All England in style

Malaysia’s Soon Huat Goh and Shevon Jemie Lai have a mouth-watering clash against home favourites Chris and Gabby Adcock next week, and prepared in the perfect manner with a title at the YONEX German Open.

The Malaysian duo are unseeded for the 2018 YONEX All England in Birmingham and have been drawn to play the Adcocks in the first round of the mixed doubles.

They were however seeded in Mulheim and lived up to that billing by defeating Danish duo Niclas Nohr and Sara Thygesen 21-14 22-20, surviving a late rally from the Danes.

"We knew we had the chance after reaching the final as we have beaten the Danish pair before,” said a delighted Lai.

"We were eager to win and fortunately, past experiences taught us to pull ourselves together.

"We calmed down and we went on to win the match and Malaysia's first mixed doubles title in the German Open.”

The Malaysian pairing will now confidently head to the YONEX All England, starting on Wednesday, as will plenty more international stars who tasted success at the YONEX German Open.

Three titles went to Japanese players in Mulheim on Sunday, with third seeds Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota beating Huang Dongping and Yu Zheng 18-21 21-14 21-6 in the women’s doubles.

Fukushima and Hirota are seeded fourth for the YONEX All England and face French duo Delphine Delrue and Lea Palermo on Wednesday.

Japan also prevailed in the men’s doubles - Takuto Inoue and Yuki Kaneko beat Indonesia’s Fajar Alfian and Muhammad Rian Ardianto and have been drawn against seventh seeds Chen Hung Ling and Wang Chi-Lin in Birmingham.

Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi is one of the favourites for the title in Birmingham and the 20-year-old came out on top against another contender – Chen Yufei – by a score of 21-19 6-21 21-12.

The situation was the same in the men’s singles in Germany, with two favourites for the title at the YONEX All England, Chou Tien Chen and Ng Ka Long Angus playing out a dramatic final.

Chinese Taipei’s Chou eventually came out on top 21-19 18-21 21-18, but was made to work for it by Ng in a final lasting 84 minutes.