Former champion Kidambi Srikanth lost in straight games to former world champion Viktor Axelsen of Denmark at the Yonex-Sunrise India Open badminton tournament in New Delhi. And that was a wrap of the 2019 tournament.
A former world no. 1 Srikanth blew two game points in the second game to lose 7-21, 20-22 to Axelsen in the men’s singles summit clash.
It was Srikanth’s first final in a BWF world tour event in 17 months. He had last won a title at the 2017 French Open.
So close, yet so far! Looking at the positives and moving forward to grab even better opportunities. Thanks everyone for your constant support! pic.twitter.com/LqJYg3iVww
— Kidambi Srikanth (@srikidambi) 31 March 2019
Performance Overview of Indian shuttlers at India Open 2019
Srikanth was clearly the best performer for the host nation in the championship as he reached the men’s singles final before going down to Viktor Axelsen of Denmark in straight games.
— PBL India (@PBLIndiaLive) 31 March 2019
Srikanth had a very good outing in the tournament and make a stunning comeback after going a game down in his semi-final tie against China’s Hyuan Yuxiang. The 26-year-old shuttler made it to the final round of a BWF world tour or super series event in the men’s singles category after a long gap of 17 months.
Srikanth had entered the finals of Commonwealth Games last year but he failed to reach the summit clash in any BWF superseries or BWF World Tour tournament since his French Open win in October 2017.
National coach Gopichand is happy with the way Srikanth has worked on his technique and improved on that off late.
“I’m very happy with the way Kidambi has progressed technically. I think Sindhu could have won. We had our chances in women’s singles, men’s doubles and women’s doubles yesterday and they could have pulled through. I think Kashyap also has had a good run. He has had a good tournament. Considering what has happened in the last year with him, it has been a good comeback,” Gopichand said after the final, reported PTI.
— Dept of Sports MYAS (@IndiaSports) 1 April 2019
Outstanding Performance in Doubles
In the men’s doubles semi-final, Indian pair Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy were called service fault on a couple of occasions during their match against Indonesia’s Ricky Karandasuwardi and Angga Pratama, in which the Indian pair lost 12-21, 17-21. Gopichand questioned the umpiring standards of the BWF event after that incident on Sunday night.
“I think Sumeeth was a little unlucky [on Saturday]. I think when umpires don’t call you in the entire week and they call you on a particular day, I think there’s something wrong with the standard of umpiring in terms of consistency,” the national coach said.
— À!shu Riyà (@callmeaishu) 30 March 2019
PV Sindhu and Parupalli Kashyap also qualified for the semi-finals. The women’s doubles and men’s doubles did well. Prannoy had a good tournament. With a kind of performance delivered by women’s and men’s doubles, players in both categories had a chance to go in further rounds. But, overall it was a good campaign by the Indian shuttlers.
Looking forward for Olympics
A big THANK YOU? to all our fans for making the atmoshphere at the new venue #IGStadium equally electric⚡️with their loudest cheer at the #YonexSunriseIndiaOpen2019.
Keep supporting and making every moment memorable. ??#IndiaontheRise #IndiaSuper500 #badminton pic.twitter.com/BfmBsuk00x
— BAI Media (@BAI_Media) 1 April 2019
Most of the top Indian shuttlers will fancy their chances of making it to the next Olympics which will be held in Tokyo next year and they need to be injury free during the period of qualification events. Players have proper plans in mind ahead of the Tokyo games.
“Players have gotten sensible and they are planning with a lot more maturity than in the past. So, I hope we get some good performances as early as possible to get those slots so there’s no mad rush towards the end leading to burnout or an injury towards the Olympics”, said Gopichand.
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