Kidambi Srikanth bags Indonesia Super Series Premier title
Ace Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth won his third Superseries title in straight games as he crushed Japan’s unseeded Kazumasa Sakai 21-11, 21-19 in the final of Indonesia Super Series Premierother sports Updated: Jun 18, 2017 16:24 IST
Kidambi Srikanth clinched the Indonesia Super Series Premier title in style on Sunday as the World No 22 outclassed Japan’s Kazumasa Sakai 21-11, 21-19 in a match that lasted just 37 minutes.
Srikanth, playing his second straight men’s singles final, started off on an aggressive note as he cruised to take an 11-8 lead at the halfway mark of the first game.
There weren’t too many smashes, but cross-court returns and deft touches at the nets forced Sakai to commit unforced errors as Srikanth dominated the course of play.
After the break as well, the Guntur lad had an ice-cool approach as he widened the margin to 10 points. He lost just three points before wrapping up the game 21-11 as Sakai struggled to find answers to his neat drop shots.
In the second game, however, Sakai made a brilliant comeback as he sent his shots wide, thus forcing Srikanth to change his style of play while he kept raining in his power smashes. The long shots also earned him a couple of points with Srikanth misjudging a few to hand over easy points.
Sakai, led by five at the break as the match seemed poised to head into the third game. However, in a brilliant comeback, Srikanth took just 10 points to earn the lead back as he got into his rhythm and held fort.
With him executing the drop shots as calmly as he did in the first game, it wasn’t long before Srikanth raced on to 19 points each as Sakai somehow managed to stay in the game.
Srikanth then finished things off with two brilliant smashes from the net, one clipping the top of the net on its way while the other was an unplayable one by all standards.
This was the third Superseries title for Srikanth, who had won the China Open in 2014 and India Open a year later. He was beaten by fellow countryman B Sai Praneeth in the summit clash of the Singapore Open back in April.
There was a chance of a repeat of all-Indian clash in Jakarta on Sunday as well, but while Srikanth beat Korean World No 1 Son Wan Ho 21-15 18-21 24-22, Sakai sent HS Prannoy packing with a gritty performance to clinch the tie 17-21, 28-26, 21-18 in his favour.
First Published: Jun 18, 2017 16:22 IST