NEW DELHI: Kidambi Srikanth continued his brilliant run in the Australian Open Super Series and made it to the semi-final of the event defeating his Indian compatriot Sai Praneeth on Friday. The World No. 22 beat Praneeth in straight games 25-23, 21-17 in the all-Indian quarterfinal to reach his third consecutive Super Series semi-final.
However, Srikanth’s triumph was followed by the disappointment of PV Sindhu’s exit from the tournament, as she went down 21-10, 20-22, 16-21 to World No. 1 Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei in the women’s singles quarterfinal. In a hard-fought hour-long contest, Tzu Ying recovered tremendously after losing the first game rather comprehensively.
Sindhu had shown signs of dominance in the first game, but Tzu Ying retaliated to justify her position as the World No. 1 in the next two. The second game went down to the wire, whereas the decider was sealed in Tzu Ying’s favour after fatigue seemed to mar Sindhu’s movement in the closing moments.
The second game began in similar fashion with Praneeth once again maintaining a slim lead over Srikanth, despite being given no breathing space. The equation was soon levelled at 9-9 before Srikanth stretched it to 16-12 in his favour. From there on, Srikanth did not commit any error, and at 19-15, was just two points away from making it to the final four. Even as Praneeth tried to fight back, Srikanth eventually clinched it 21-17.
Srikanth’s road to the semi-final include wins over Chinese Taipei’s Kan Chao Yu and World No. 1 Son Wan-Ho of South Korea.