Jonny AKESSON enjoys playing at home soilPhoto: Max Ansbro
European Veterans Championships
After the day off, the Helsinborg Arena is again fully packed with players and their supporters. The day three of the play started with the clashes in the main draw. One of the matches that caught the eye was between Jonny AKESSON of Sweden and Hans-Juergen SCHADE of Germany in Men’s Singles 50. Like all Group stage matches, Helsinborg’s ace won this one in straight games, too.
“It is little bit tricky to play when you do not practice on regular basis, “explained AKESSON.
Jonny was one game up, when he suddenly found himself 1:8 down. Then the pendulum turned once again and he won that game by 11:8.
“I was positive from the start that I am going to win, but as I said, when you do not have enough matches in your legs, it is not easy. I lost my focus for a minute.”
Jonny AKESSON is one of Sweden’s most talented players. In 1984 he participated at the European Championships and in 1985 at the World Championships. Twice he played the Nordic Championships and won two gold medals. Totally he played seven International Team Matches for Sweden. Jonny has three gold medals from the Swedish Championships in doubles with Jan-Ove WALDNER in 1982 and 1991 and with Jörgen PERSSON in 1985.
At European Youth Championships, Jonny won two gold medals in junior teams, 1981 and 1982 and three gold in junior doubles with Jan-Ove WALDNER 1980, 1981, 1982.
You were successful as a youngster, what happened afterwards?
“The competition in the team was fierce. On the other side I never liked too much to practice. I enjoy the game and the competition. That was the reason why I left the field early. I was not motivated. I stay in sport, but only by playing League’s matches,” explained AKESSON.
In the Group stage he beat Finland's Alexey KIRICHENKO, Germany's Thilo LEHMANN, Greek's Konstantinos DIMITRAKOPOULOS, all three won by straight games.
AKESSON owns the shop 200 meters from the venue, so he took a break from work to come to play.
“Yes, I work near by. My club mates are here and that is why I decided to play at the veterans for a first time.”