Fuzhou: Kidambi Srikanth and Saina Nehwal shocked the host country China on Sunday by winning the China Open Super Series Premier tournament held in Fuzhou.
The 21-year-old and world number 16 Indian shuttler K. Srikanth who grew up idolizing the five-time world champion Lin Dan, defeated Lin 21-19 21-17 in the men’s singles final for his maiden Super Series title.
The 21-year-old from Andhra Pradesh showed no fear at the end of first set when he was trailing 18-19, he fought back to level the score at 19-19 before taking the all-important 20-19 lead. Then one of his smashes hit the edge of the Lin Dan’s racket and fizzled away outside which allowed him to score the 21st point.
Due to some unforced errors from Lin Dan, Srikanth blazed into a quick 5-3 lead early in the second set. Srikanth continued to put the 2008 and 2012 Olympic gold medalist under pressure throughout the second set and took three quick points to reach the coveted match-point before giving one up, and then forcing another error from Lin Dan to win the second game 21-17.
Meanwhile, India’s Saina Nehwal beat Japanese qualifier Akane Yamaguchi in straight sets to clinch the USD 700,000 China Open Super Series Premier tournament . The World No. 5 Indian prevailed over the 17-year-old Akane 21-12, 22-20 in the women’s singles finals which lasted 42 minutes at the Haixia Olympic Sport Center. This was Saina’s third title of the year as the Indian had won the Australian Super Series in June, besides clinching the Syed Modi International Grand Prix Gold early in the year.
Having advanced to the final of their last eight tournaments (including China Open), South Korea’s world No. 1 Lee Yong-dae-Yoo Yeon-seong won their fifth title of the year on Sunday by outlasted eighth seeds Chai Biao-Hong Wei of China in men’s doubles, winning 21-14, 21-15.
The host nation China also bagged two titles on Sunday as Zhang Nan-Zhao Yunlei and Wang Xiaoli-Yu Yang clinched wins for China in the mixed doubles and women’s doubles respectively.