Group 1B: Russia's short reign
Ivan Sozonov / Vladimir Ivanov were the only Russians to get the better of Koreans. The straightforward penetration of Ivanov's heavy smash helped the 2016 All England champions take care of men's doubles, 21-18, 21-18.
Russian singles proponents Evgenia Kosetskaya and especially Sergey Sirant can be proud of the personal flair with which they played their shots. Playing on the television court, they would have been responsible for overturning any presumptions of casual spectators that Russia is unknown in badminton.
One of the other pleasures of the evening was the reuniting of former world top 5 Korean pair Jung Kyung Eun and Kim Ha Na in the women's doubles. Their racquet skills were too formidable for Ekaterina Bolotova / Alina Davletova, winning 21-7, 21-17.
In the mixed doubles, a healthy first game lead by Evgenia Dimova / Evgenij Dremin evaporated against Chae Yoo Jung / Choi Solgyu and it was another straight games affair for the tournament's second seeds. 21-14, 21-12.
Group 1C: Japan stumble mid-way through
Japan expectedly won the first two and last two matches but of these their German opponents impressed nevertheless in men's doubles and women's singles. As the second game wore on, Marvin Emil Seidel became the most outstanding smasher. It was almost good enough to level the match against men's world #6 Takeshi Kamura / Keigo Sonoda. 12-21, 19-21.
The score of 10-21, 5-21, does not do justice to Yvonne Li's undaunted performance. In a match showcasing the best from both ladies, the German displayed a wide range of shot making while world #10, Nozomi Okuhara's exceptional astuteness translated into fine reading of the shots of a first time opponent and therefore often being in good balance to address them.
Marc Zwiebler took back one point in the tie by beating an inconsistent Kenta Nishimoto, 21-8, 21-18. Having studied the Japanese well enough to know how dangerous he can be the former European champion admitted, “I was very very happy I was in charge of the game”.
Mark Lamsfuss returned later with Isabel Herttrich in mixed doubles and grabbed the second game this time around. Kenta Kazuno's still vibrant offence after 16-16 in the rubber game was the key to victory in the last as well as loudest match of the night in the stadium.
Group 3: Success starts with an S
Success followed expectations and went to the countries from the continents where badminton is more popular. Oceania's third and fourth representations on Day 1, Fiji and French Polynesia (Tahiti), could not prevent their more seasoned Sri Lankan and Slovakian opponents from clean sweeps in their respective ties.