All it took for Toby Penty to reach the final of the Scottish Open was a word of advice from his coach and a bit of belief.
The 25-year-old badminton star from Walton-on-Thames has been in superlative form at Glasgow’s Emirates Arena but struggled in the first game of his semi-final against Dane Rasmus Gemke, going down 21-14.
But Penty’s form returned for the second game and roared on by the Scottish crowd the world number 68 won games two and three 21-14 21-17, with which he was clearly delighted.
“First set I just wasn’t up where I needed to be then I got some words of wisdom from the back,” Penty explained.
“I think my body language altered and actually that changed the game for me – stuff I was bemoaning like not making shots in the first I started making in the second.
“There was just that extra bit of belief so I’m really happy that worked out!
“I just needed to show a bit more, it was actually very similar to when I played here at the worlds, you need to speed up but you need to really focus on each shot and I think I started to do that better.
“I needed to believe in my attacking play and once I did that it all changed.
“I feel like I got the crowd into it, in the first they wanted something to cheer and I wasn’t really giving them anything.
“I’m glad I could turn it into a match they could enjoy, then they could feed off me and I definitely fed off them.”
The Surrey shuttler will face world number 68 Lucas Corvee of France in the final – the two men know each other well and Penty is looking forward to the match.
“We grew up in the juniors together, I think he’s a year younger than me (Lucas),” Penty added.
“We’ve had a couple of really tight matches and I think it’ll be quite even tomorrow, he’s had a really tough match and I’ve had a tough one so physically we’re going to be in the same place.
“I’m going to have to dig deep and try and use the energy of the crowd to go one step further.”
The Scottish Open Grand Prix is being hosted at the Emirates Arena by BADMINTONscotland with support from Glasgow Life, Glasgow City Council and EventScotland, part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate. Tickets are on sale at www.badmintonscotland.org.uk or at the Emirates Arena box office.
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