Anders Antonsen clinched the Denmark Open title in a pulsating 74-minute contest against fellow countryman Rasmus Gemke 18-21, 21-19, 21-12 in a final that left both shuttlers barely able to walk out the court.
Victory for the world number three meant he became the first Danish shuttler to win the tournament men's singles title in a decade since Jan O Jorgensen, whom Antonsen beat in the quarter-finals, achieved it in 2010.
This final was guaranteed a Danish winner, but both shuttlers weren’t prepared to do each other any favours.
Gemke forced the issue in the opener with his precise attacks to take the lead at 21-19. The seventh seed had a brilliant opportunity to seal the tie in straight games at 19-all in the second, but two unforced errors gave Antonsen the equaliser.
The favourite finally gained a stranglehold after the interval in the deciding game to win 21-12, but both men deserved huge plaudits for giving it everything.
“Many things are going around my head right now. My body is so tired, I can’t think about the game. When you are up against a world class player like Anders of course there will changes in tempo. It’s difficult to play because you never know what will come,” said Gemke afterwards.
Antonsen, who needed help to get onto the winners’ podium, was unable to give an interview due to his exertions.
Denmark Open Champion 2020? Extremely happy and proud! Amazing to share the stage with Rasmus as well - thanks for another great battle! Also huge thanks to @badmintondenmark for making this event happen!! And of course huge thanks to everyone supporting me, friends, family and fans! Appreciate you all?
In the women’s singles final, Nozomi Okuhara had life easier as she overcame Carolina Marin 21-19, 21-17 to win her first title in two years.
The Japanese cut a dogged figure against the Spaniard, working overtime to retrieve seemingly impossible shots and work her opponent into mistakes.
Okuhara, who lost in last year’s final said: “I’m happy! Long time no see for a title!” she said.
This match was the only one that ended in straight games.
The men’s doubles final also went to the wire, where English pair Marcus Ellis-Chris Langridge were pushed to their limits before beating Russian duo Vladimir Ivanov-Ivan Sozonov 20-22, 21-17, 21-18.
The women's doubles contest was won by Yuki Fukushima-Sayaka Hirota, who ousted their Japanese counterparts Mayu Matsumoto-Wakana Nagahara 21-10, 16-21, 21-18.
In the mixed doubles final, Germans Mark Lamsfuss-Isabel Herttrich did well to beat English couple Chris-Gabrielle Adcock 18-21, 21-11, 21-14.