PV Sindhu stormed into the finals of the Swiss Open BWF Super-300 tournament with a straight-game victory against Mia Blichfeldt of Denmark 22-20, 21-10 while Kidambi Srikanth suffered a 13-21, 19-21 loss against top seed Viktor Axelsen in the men’s singles semifinals.
After being outplayed in the first game, Srikanth worked hard in the second. Trailing 9-16, he made a splendid comeback to catch up with Axelsen at 17-17 but failed to score the important points from 19-19.
Meanwhile, the St Jakobshalle Basel arena proved lucky for Sindhu once again. The Indian became the world champion at the same venue in August 2019.
Interestingly, this is the first final Sindhu has reached in the last 18 months.
The 25-year-old took 43 minutes to get past the Danish girl. Sindhu was cruising ahead in the first game leading 17-12 before the world No.12 surprised the Indian with a five-point burst to draw level.
A couple of unforced errors helped Sindhu to move to 20-17 but Blitchfeldt was determined to fight back and a sharp return, a straight smash and deft work at the net enabled her to save three game points. However, Sindhu powered ahead by winning the next two points.
In the second game, Blichfeldt lost way by making too many unforced errors. In the first 10 points she hit at least six outside the court allowing Sindhu to go into the break with an 11-6 lead. Thereafter, it was Sindhu all the way.
After finding it tough towards the end of the first game, Sindhu changed the strategy. Noticing that Blichfeldt was controlling the game near the net, Sindhu successfully pushed her back, inducing several mistakes from the Dane.
Sindhu may face Olympic champion Carolina Marin of Spain in the summit clash on Sunday. The top seed is scheduled to play Pornpawee Chochuwong of Thailand later on Saturday.
Late on Friday, Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty will play Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen of Denmark in the men’s doubles semifinals.