Open challenge

Pedro Martins and Telma Santos headed up a five-strong Portuguese party at last week’s badminton Italian Open.

The two Che Lagoense stars were amongst the favourites to reach the final stages of the tournament but were eclipsed by ‘neighbours’ Pablo Abian and Carolina Marin on this occasion.

The two Spaniards fought through to their respective men’s and lady’s title matches where they were beaten by Poland’s Przemyslav Wacha and Germany’s Olga Konon.

Martins and Santos should next be seen in action together at the European Mixed Doubles Championships to be held in Amsterdam between February 15 and 20.

The younger generations will have its day in Caldas da Rainha later next year when Portugal will stage the European U-17 Championships.