Dutch Open success for Veenstra and Suzuki
Richard Veenstra and Mikuru Suzuki were crowned Dutch Open champions on Sunday evening in Assen, Netherlands.
Veenstra – who lifted the British Open, British Classic and Scottish Open last year as well as reaching the semi-finals at the Dutch Open – reigned victorious after coming through a men’s field of over 3,000 competitors.
The 37-year-old is based in Ossenzijl which is just a short drive from Assen where he lifted the biggest title of his career to date, after beating Ryan Hogarth 3-1 in the final.
After already claiming scalps over five players to reach finals day in his home country, dropping just one leg en route, Veenstra denied Michael Stoeten, Carlo van Peer and Luc Peters to reach the last eight for the third time on his fifth appearance at the Dutch Open.
Narrow victories over Kevin Doets and Jeffrey van Egdom followed for Veenstra as he booked his place in the final, before a 3-1 victory against an inspired Scotsman in Ryan Hogarth sealed the title for the 37-year-old.
Meanwhile, Mikuru Suzuki – who lifted the ladies’ World Championship crown last month – added to her ever-growing title tally as she denied Aileen de Graaf just hours after she clinched the ladies’ pairs title with her Japanese compatriot Yuriko Yamaguchi.
Suzuki won his opening three matches in straight legs to progress to the last 32, where she defeated Paula Jacklin, the wife of newly-appointed BDO chairman Des. A 4-1 win over Casey Gallagher followed, before victories over Jo Clements and Anneke Kuijten sealed her place in the final.
The 37-year-old from Takamatsu in Japan once again showcased not only her talent, but how much the Asian game is improving as she dropped just two legs in the final, averaging 81.63 in a 5-2 triumph.
Defending champion Deta Hedman endured a quarter-final exit at the hands of British Classic winner Laura Turner, while four-time World Champion Lisa Ashton suffered a last 128 defeat from the Netherlands’ Anita van der Velden.