It was a mixed day for India at Dubai Open Super Series Finals on Wednesday as PV Sindhu delivered a victory against China’s He Bingjiao in three games while Kidambi Srikanth went down against World No. 1 and defending champion Viktor Axelsen. Sindhu, who clinched the India Open and Korea Open this year, began the final tournament of the year on a winning note as she defeated Bingjiao 21-11, 16-21, 21-18 in an intense 63-minutes encounter. Srikanth, on the other hand, went down miserably in his opening round match against top seed Axelsen 21-13, 21-17. The two took the court at the Dubai Super Series Final, where only the top eight in the respective men’s and women’s singles rankings have earned the right to compete. Sindhu had bagged a silver at Glasgow World Championship and finished runners-up at Hong Kong Open last month. World No. 4 Srikanth became the only Indian, and fourth player ever, to win four Super Series titles in a calendar with the Indonesia Open, Australia Open, Denmark Open and the French Open titles. He was, however, forced to miss the China Open and Hong Kong Open because of thigh muscle strain which he sustained at the Nationals in Nagpur last month. He has been placed in Group B of men’s singles event along with Chou Tien Chen (world No.7) and Shi Yuqi (world No.8), apart from Axelsen while Sindhu has been clubbed with the Japanese duo of No.2 ranked Akane Yamaguchi and world No.15 Sayako Sato, besides Bingjiao in Group A.
PV Sindhu and Kidambi Srikanth first round: How it happened
2025 hrs IST: Srikanth loses opening round 21-13, 21-17
Srikanth loses the opening round of Dubai Open Super Series Finals against top seed Viktor Axelsen 21-13, 21-17.
2017 hrs IST: Axelsen looks like he is in a hurry to win the match. He has taken 11-6 lead as the second game goes into mid-interval break. Srikanth needs to take things in his control if he wants to go ahead to the second round.
2010 hrs IST: Unforced errors by Srikanth has cost him the lead in the second game as well, trails Axelsen 7-3.
2005 hrs IST: Srikanth loses opening game 21-13
Axelsen turned the opening game in his favour after the interval. He took quick points to demolish the Indian shuttler 21-13 in the first game. Srikanth needs to take control in the next game if he wants to stay in the competition.
1955 hrs IST: Srikanth loses the lead. An intense neck-to-neck competition prevails that leads to Axelsen taking 14-12 lead.
1945 hrs IST: A great beginning by India’s second hope in the tournament. Srikanth goes into the mid-interval break with 11-9 lead against the top seed Axelsen. He scored five points on the trot to take the much-deserved lead.
1945 hrs IST: Next up: Kidambi Srikanth takes on World No. 1 Viktor Axelsen on the same court.
1940 hrs IST: PV SINDHU DEFEATS HE BINGJIAO 21-11, 16-21, 21-18
1935 hrs IST: Bingjiao is trying to reduce the gap, but still trails Sindhu 17-16. The match gets even more intense with long, brilliant rallies taking place.
1927 hrs IST: Beat mode on! Sindhu attacks, overtaking He Bingjiao at mid-interval of the match-decider.
1922 hrs IST: Not an ideal start, again. Sindhu is trailing at the beginning of the match decider but manages to make it level 5-5. The Hyderabadi looks a little out of breath.
1915 hrs IST: PV Sindhu loses the second game 21-16
Sindhu went down to a resilient Bingjiao 21-16 in the second game. Even though the Indian tried to reduce the gap by winning crucial points, lack of energy in the later half of the second game cost her, as the match now moves into an exciting decider.
1910 hrs IST: Looks like Sindhu’s energy has gone down. Despite winning back the points to bridge the gap between her and the Chinese, she loses three points on the trot to give her advantage. Sindhu trails Bingjiao 16-13 in the second game.
1904 hrs IST: The Hyderabadi shuttler makes it 11-9 at mid-interval break. She can still turn the game in her favour and take the lead, avoiding the match to go into a decider.
1900 hrs IST: Sindhu manages to catch up, bringing the second game equal at 7-7.
1858 hrs IST: Not a very encouraging second game beginning for the Hyderabadi shuttler. PV Sindhu trails 1-5 in the second game against Bingjiao.
1852 hrs IST: PV Sindhu wins the opening game 21-11
Sindhu was in control throughout the first game against Chinese He Bingjiao, despite losing the first point. At break, she had an 8-point lead which she extended to 10 points by the end of the first game. Sindhu wraps the first game in just 14 minutes!
1850 hrs IST: Way to go! Sindhu has taken a 8-point lead in the opening game. She has her eyes set on winning the first game against the Chinese. Not long before she wins the first game.
1846 hrs IST: A brilliant diving retrieval made sure World No. 3 Sindhu maintained a good lead, going into the break 11-7. Now she needs to make sure she does not lose her lead to the Chinese
1840 hrs IST: Sindhu has an expected confident start. She takes 3-2 lead over China’s He Bingjiao, who took the first point but lost the lead to the Hyderabadi.
1830 hrs IST: Sindhu takes the court first. She is up against World No. 9 He Bingjiao in the last tournament of BWF Super Series format this year.
1805 hrs IST: Sindhu will begin the proceedings with her Group A match against China’s He Bingjiao. The Hyderabadi shuttler’s match will be immediately followed by the Men’s singles match between Srikanth and Denmark’s Viktor Axelsen.
1800 hrs IST: Hello and welcome to our live coverage of the Dubai Super Series Finals opening day as PV Sindhu takes on He Bingjiao while Kidambi Srikanth fights against top seed Viktor Axelsen in their campaign openers.