Posted on 3rd October 2023
By RJ Mitchell
ADAM PRINGLE is hoping he can use this week’s Scottish Open to provide a platform to break the top-100 in both Men’s and Mixed Doubles.
The 22-year-old will team up with Jack MacGregor ranked 129 in the Men’s Doubles while he is ranked 118 partnering Rachel Andrew in the Mixed with hopes high that a successful weekend at the Emirates can literally be a game-changer in both disciplines.
Pringle and MacGregor open their campaign against England’s Rory Easton and Zach Russ on Friday determined to continue the recent fine form that saw them reach the quarter-finals of the Yonex Belgian International Challenge.
Reflecting on this, the Scotland no.6 ranked men’s doubles ace said: “Jack and I have been playing together since 2019 and we have been building things steadily and are around 120 now in the world rankings but we have struggled with getting enough tournament play to really build that and certainly Covid didn’t help.
“On top of that injuries have also hurt us but we are on a good tournament run with the Belgian recently where we made the quarters, losing to the Danish pair of Jesper Toft and Andreas Sondergaard who went on to win the tournament, so that was pleasing and has given us a good positive platform for the Scottish.
“After the Scottish we then have four more tournaments before Christmas so we have the chance to really build momentum and our rankings and maybe even push on inside the top-100 and all of that makes this weekend an important one for us.
“But we are starting to do a lot better in the Challenge Tournaments as a whole which is a good sign and we just need to keep building that momentum.”
When it came to first round opponents Easton and Russ there is a score to settle for Adam and Jack: “We played them a couple of years back in Hungary and unfortunately we had to withdraw after Jack injured himself but we think we have a decent chance as their game is quite well suited to ours.
“That said they are very solid players and make few errors so we need to make sure we are focussed on making them cough up the mistakes otherwise it will be tough.
“So the key is to build the pressure and then keep it on, Jack and I are comfortable with their game which is pretty flat and we are also confident around the net and we need to make that count.
“Really if we can produce our best form on Friday we will give ourselves a decent chance.”
Friday will be a busy day for Adam as he also partners Rachel Andrew against Spain’s Jacobo Fernandez and Paula Lopez in the Mixed with the prospect looming that if he is successful in both encounters second round matches await later in the day.
It is a possibility the Scotland international is relishing: “Both first rounds are on Friday and if we can get through there will be another round on Friday so four matches is a possibility on the opening day and you just have to be ready for that as it is what you train for,” said Adam.
He continued: “With the Mixed I haven’t seen the Spaniards play as a couple before but I’ve played in Spain with Paula and she is a good strong player and the key will be to move the shuttle around but we will come up with a game plan once we have done the video analysis this week.
“Rachel and I have played together for quite a while now and we are just below 100 but one tournament can shift up 10-15 places so the Scottish is important in this respect.”
Of one thing there is no doubt and that is Adam’s enthusiasm to play in front of friends and family at the Emirates this week and he said: “It’s not often you get to play in front of your own people and although my mum and dad tune in to the live stream feeds it is not the same as being there in person.
“The other aspect is that I’ve played the Scottish Open a couple of times before but never fully fit. One year it was a back injury and I had to play through it, then on another occasion Jack had to pull out and this is the first time in both Men’s & Women’s I am playing full fit with Jack and Rachel also good to go and that is a really pleasant change.
“I also coach at the City of Glasgow badminton club and hopefully a few of the kids will come along to watch and take some encouragement from what they see and it would be really good to pick out their faces in the crowd.
“All of that will just make the Scottish extra special and a stand out for me.”