Satwik-Chirag clinch Thailand Open crown, again - Hindustan Times
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Satwik-Chirag clinch Thailand Open crown, again

May 22, 2024 06:35 PM IST

The reigning Asian Games champions didn’t even have to bring out their best as they defeated Chen Bo Yang and Liu Yi 21-15, 21-15 in three quarters of an hour

Life has come full circle for Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty. Five years ago, they achieved their breakthrough title win at the Thailand Open, beating the then-giants of the game.

Satwiksairaj Rankireddy, Chirag Shetty clinch Thailand Open Super 500 title(AP)
Satwiksairaj Rankireddy, Chirag Shetty clinch Thailand Open Super 500 title(AP)

Today, they are the giants, demolishing the hopes of all those aspiring to beat the world No.3 to clinch the $420,000 title once again on Sunday. So dominant were the Indian top seeds throughout the week that they won all five matches at the Nimibutr Stadium without dropping a game with none of their matches extending beyond 45 minutes.

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On Sunday, the reigning Asian Games champions didn’t even have to bring out their best as they defeated upcoming Chinese pair Chen Bo Yang and Liu Yi 21-15, 21-15 in three quarters of an hour to win the Super 500 title for the second time. This was their first meeting against the world No.29 combine.

This was also Satwik and Chirag’s second title this year after winning the French Open crown in March. The Indian pairing, who will reclaim the world No.1 spot once again when the latest Badminton World Federation (BWF) rankings come out on Tuesday, had also reached the finals of the Malaysia Open and India Open earlier this year.

Bangkok has been a special place for the reigning Commonwealth Games champions who not just claimed their first Super 500+ title in 2019 but also helped India win the historic Thomas Cup crown two years back.

“Thailand Open has been a special tournament for us as we won our first Super 500 crown here and have won many more tournaments thereafter. We are hoping that this victory will start another winning run for us,” said Satwik after clinching the crown.

The Indian pair started the final by opening a 5-1 lead before the Chinese combine had their best phase of the summit clash as they won nine of the next 11 points. But Chirag and Satwik wrested control with some aggressive play and packed the opening game rather easily.

The eventual champions always had the upper hand in the second game and just like the first, they won five consecutive points at the end to kick off their trademark celebrations.

“We knew that we cannot relax even for a single point against our opponents as they fight till the end. But we played our best game of the tournament today and controlled the situation very well,” added Satwik about their Chinese opponents who had reached their first final of the year.

The victory also helped the Indian combination earn 9,200 ranking points and a prize purse of $33,180.

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