The Popov Brothers Hope to Shine at the French Badminton Championships in Fos-sur-Mer

The Popov Brothers Hope to Shine at the French Badminton Championships in Fos-sur-Mer

Christo (left) and Toma Junior Popov (right)
Baptiste Autissier / Baptiste Autissier / Panoramic

The French badminton championships began this Friday in Fos-sur-Mer. At home, Toma Junior and Christo Popov, French numbers 1 and 2, hope to “shine in front of their audience” in this new edition.

In Fos-sur-Mer, where it all began for the Popov brothers, who train in a nearby gymnasium, the 2024 French championships have started. Among the men, the two big favorites are the Popov brothers, Toma Junior and Christo, who dominate the discipline in France and are preparing for the Olympic Games together. Seed 1 (for Toma Junior, 25 years old) and 2 (for Christo, 21 years old), the two French people hope for one thing: to face each other in the final. “This is the objective that we set for ourselves, that the club and the city hope for. There are a lot of expectations on us but there will be difficult matches to reach the final. For the moment, we are concentrating round after round and we hope for a 100% Popov final.”blurted Christo, sure of his strength but wary.

The main adversaries of the two brothers in Fos-sur-Mer

Arnaud Merkle (44th in the world) and Alex Lanier (46th) will be the two main competitors for the French in singles, while in doubles, the Popov brothers, seeded n°2, could face the French number 1, Lucas Corvée, in the final. and Ronan Labar (37th in the world, against 42nd for the brothers of Bulgarian origin).

The Popov brothers will be able to count on the support of the public and expect to experience three days of extraordinary competition. “It’s a bit of a consecration for us, we’re trying to promote badminton and it’s a first for us at ‘Fos’. We want to do things well and win medals at home”added Toma Junior, who will try to defend his title in Bouches-du-Rhône.

A new formula that divides

This year, the formula for the French badminton championships is changing. These championships, originally «amateurs», have become more restrictive this year with fewer players in the draws, to allow professionals to play one less match. A divisive choice, since Delphine Delrue, world number 1 in mixed doubles, had decided to boycott these championships for this reason.

The two brothers, spearheads of French badminton, were not consulted by the federation before this decision. “There is no perfect formula, Christo blurted, confirming his big brother’s words. I think most people took this formula very badly because the change was radical. I think she didn’t find a happy medium and that led to this call for a boycott. But there are also advantages, especially for top French players, like us. This allows us to play fewer matches, and to avoid matches that are perhaps not useless but with less meaning. But it takes away this chance for young people to be able to play one or two matches against the best French players. We had this chance when we were young to play against them, and here we take it away from them, so they have the right to express their dissatisfaction. Now it is up to the federation to consider a less restrictive reform for next year.”

Toma Junior Popov will launch his French championships against Enogat Roy, player from VGA Stella Badminton Saint-Maur. Christo Popov will face Simon Baron-Vezilier, BACO player (69) straight away, also for the quarter-finals of the French championships.

2024-02-03 11:41:33
#hope #Popov #final #admit #brothers

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