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  • K Srikanth lifts Indonesia Open; President, PM congratulate him

    Published on June 19, 2017

    Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth clinched his third Super Series title, lifting the Indonesia Open men’s singles trophy with a straight-game victory over Japanese qualifier Kazumasa Sakai in the finals on Sunday. World No.22 Srikanth, who had reached the finals at Singapore Open in April, outclassed Sakai, ranked 47th, 21-11 21-19 in just 37 minutes to take home a cheque of USD 75,000.

    Srikanth played a patient game and didn’t allow his opponent to engage in any fast-paced rally. He dictated the pace with his precise angled returns and unleashed his smashes at perfect intervals to down his rival.Playing in tricky windy conditions, Srikanth took time to gauge the conditions as his initial returns went wide and out. But his rival also suffered because of similar unforced errors and the Indian led 6-4 early on. He consolidated his lead to reach 11-8 at the break.

    SrikanthAfter the interval, Srikanth continued to dominate the proceedings. His net dribbles were better than Sakai and with Sakai struggling with precision, the Indian zoomed to a 19-11 lead and sealed it with two lucky net chord points. After the change of sides, Sakai was more aggressive in his approach and produced an improved net game to dominate the rallies. Soon, the Japanese was leading 7-3 as he entered the break with an 11-6 lead with the help of a backhand return near the net.

    After the interval, Srikanth’s aggressive game gave him the desired results. He turned the tables and caught up with the Japanese at 13-13 with an on-rushing smash at the net. The duo moved neck and neck after that till 19-19 before Srikanth produced two fantastic smashes to seal the issue and punch the air in celebration.

    Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulating Kidambi Srikanth tweeted, “Congratulations @srikidambi! We are extremely delighted on your victory in the Indonesia Open Super Series tournament.” President Pranab Mukherjee also took to twitter and said, “Heartiest congratulations to Kidambi Srikanth on winning Indonesian Open Super Series Tournament.”

    Other political leaders and union ministers including FM Arun Jaitley, I&B Minister Venkaiah Naidu also congratulated the Indian shuttler.