Monday June 19, 2017
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Srikanth Kidambi of India returns a shot against Son Wanho of South Korea during their men's singles semi-final match at the Indonesia Open badminton tournament in Jakarta on June 17, 2017. — AFP picSrikanth Kidambi of India returns a shot against Son Wanho of South Korea during their men's singles semi-final match at the Indonesia Open badminton tournament in Jakarta on June 17, 2017. — AFP picJAKARTA, June 19 — Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth yesterday claimed his first ever Indonesia Open Superseries title after defeating Japanese qualifier Kazumasa Sakai in an impressive win. 

World No 22 Srikanth who clinched a spot in the final after scoring a victory against World No 1 Son Wan Ho of South Korea a day earlier only needed 37 minutes to overpower Sakai in two straight sets with 21-11, 21-19. 

“It’s been a long time since I’ve won a super series as I was actually injured after the Olympics,” Srikanth told journalists after the game in Jakarta. 

Sakai who ranked 47th managed to take back control at the beginning of the second game and was leading by 11-6 but Srikanth quickly caught up and ended his tournament in victory. 

“It’s definitely much needed for me after losing the final in the Singapore Open,” Srikanth said. 

The 24-year-old athlete managed to reach the final in the Singapore Open in April but had to admit defeat against fellow Indian shuttler Sai Praneeth. 

In the women’s single, Sakai’s compatriot Sayaka Sato won her first ever singles title in a Badminton World Federation Super Series event after defeating World’s No 5, Sung Ji-Hyun of South Korea by 21-13, 17-21, 21-19. 

“After the second game, I saw my opponent’s face was quite tense... that’s when I started to earn point by point,” Sato told journalists. 

Meanwhile in the mixed double, Olympic champion Tontowi Ahmad and Liliyana Natsir of Indonesia won the only title for the country in the tournament after defeating China’s Zheng Siwei and Chen Qingchen in two straight set by 22-20, 21-15. 

“This is very meaningful for us, we’ve won in the Olympics, we won All England three times before, but we’ve never really been a champion at home,” Ahmad said.

In women’s doubles, Chen Qingchen and Jia Yifan of China beat Chang Ye Na and Lee So Hee of South Korea by 21-19, 15-21, 21-10. Their men’s doubles compatriots, Li Junhui and Liu Yuche also won the final against Mathias Boe and Carsten Morgensen by 21-13, 17-21, 21-14. — AFP

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