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Mixed start for Danes

Three young stars from Denmark experienced mixed fortunes on opening day of the Yonex All England on Wednesday.

Hans-Kristian Vittinghus (right), got the better of SEA Games champion Simon Santoso while former Denmark Open champion Jan O Jorgensen was “Sho-wn” the exit by Sho Sasaki of Japan and former world junior champion Viktor Axelsen’s All England debut was ended by Kenichi Tago.

Vittinghus, who will face the winner of the Lee Chong Wei-Wang Zhengming match on Thursday, had a real up-and-downer against Simon with play going one way, then the next.

In the end, the Bitburger Open champion came away with a 21-14, 8-21, 21-7, victory.

“I performed well and it was a great game,” said Vittinghus. “I’m extremely pleased with what I achieved today.

“I’ve been playing a lot better lately. I haven’t played Lee Chong Wei before and it will be lots of fun. I’m feeling good and had a good game against Lin Dan last week (narrowly losing 21-19, 23-21 in the German Open quarter-finals).”

Simon, who went all the way to the final in Germany, looked a spent force and will now have to pick himself up before the Olympics.

Jorgensen, who won the Copenhagen Masters last December, failed to capitalise on the rallies, which was the turning point of a close match.

Sasaki (below), who has beaten nearly all the top players in the world, and whom some would nominate as the most improve player of 2011, eked out a 21-18, 21-19, victory.

He will now play Dionysius Hayom Rumbaka, who stunned eighth seeded Chinese star Du Pengyu 21-16, 15-21, 21-19.    

“I didn’t play my best today and he played a really good game, especially towards the end,” admitted Jorgensen.

“It was tough to play against him in the rallies. I have the Swiss Open next week and will try to rally. It is disappointing (to lose) and I’ll try to get back on my feet.”

Tago is also through to the second round after beating Axelsen 21-12, 24-22.

In the women’s draw, world champion Wang Yihan and fourth seed Saina Nehwal reached the second round in contrasting fashion.

Wang Yihan, who won here in 2009, was runner-up a year later and who missed last year’s tournament because of injury, crushed Pai Hsiao Ma 21-10, 21-8.

She will next play teammate Liu Xin, who defeated Michelle Li 24-22, 21-19, 21-11.

Saina, meanwhile, was pushed all the way by Thai qualifier Sapsiree Taerattanachai before winning 21-11, 13-21, 21-13.

For full results, click here.

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