Kidambi Srikanth wins French Open title

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Kidambi Srikanth could reach World No. 2 in the BWF rankings next week following his French Open victory. (photo: AP)
Kidambi Srikanth could reach World No. 2 in the BWF rankings next week following his French Open victory. (photo: AP)

Odense: India’s No. 8 seed men’s singles shuttler Kidambi Srikanth was on fire on Sunday in Paris, clinching his fourth Superseries title of the year with a dominating straight-game victory over the unseeded Kenta Nishimoto of Japan in just 35 minutes.

World No. 4 Srikanth didn’t underestimate the World No. 40 Nishimoto in the final. The Indian overcame a 5-9 deficit and quickly asserted his dominance to lead at 19-12 before wrapping up the first set 21-14.

Srikanth continued his extraordinary rhythm and momentum he had built up in the first set, zooming to a 10-2 lead to complete the game 21-13 and claim his second consecutive title in two weeks. Srikanth won the USD 750,000 Denmark Open in Odense last Sunday.

“Nishimoto has been playing well this week. He defeated Lee Chong Wei in the first round, and then Anders Antonsen in the semi-finals. Not to mention Antonsen had defeated Chen Long in the second round. I knew it would be a difficult match. I am happy and excited with my performance,” said Srikanth.

“In the final, I did not repeat the mistakes I’ve made in the quarter-finals and semi-final, where I started slow and allowed my opponents to take the initiative,” added Srikanth.

“Nishimoto is an aggressive and attacking player, I didn’t want to give him the chance, and I am glad I started off a little better on Sunday,” explained Srikanth.

Srikanth also credited his two back-to-back Superseries title wins this year to the way he had been trained in the last 10 months.

In mixed doubles final, the Rio Olympic champions and No. 4 seeds Tontowi Ahmad/Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia came from 3-9 in the first set to beat No. 1 seeds Chen Qingchen/Zheng Siwei of China 22-20, 21-15 to win their second Superseries title this year. They won their first Superseries title in front of home crowd at the Indonesia Open in June.

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