Prior to the Singapore Open Superseries final, only one Indian male shuttler had won a Superseries title in the singles category. And that man was in contention to make it two. Up against him was a compatriot who had a superior head-to-head. They shared the coach that had got them from young prodigies to top badminton players of the country. And on Sunday, it was the turn of the ‘underdog’ to stage an impressive comeback in both the second and third game to come out victorious. With that, B Sai Praneeth emerged 17-21, 21-17, 21-12 winner over Kidambi Srikanth in the Singapore Open Final.
Sai Praneeth trailed 1-8 in the second game and 1-6 in the third to claw his way back into the contest as Srikanth lost his composure and momentum. With that, Sai Praneeth gathered the lead and picked pace with deft touches at the net that found no answer from Srikanth.
With the win, Sai Praneeth became the second Indian, after Srikanth, to win a Superseries title. To make it even more interesting, Praneeth has never won a Grand Prix Gold event with his latest forway in a final being the Syed Modi International where he emerged second-best to Sameer Verma. Previously he had won the Canada Open in 2016.
After the win, Sai Praneeth said, “The way I played this tournament, I’m very very, happy. Right from the first day, the support for Indian players has been great. Thanks to the Indian fans for cheering for us.”
With both players being coached by Gopichand, they understood the game of the other well and knew what to expect. “Its always difficult to play with who you practice everyday,”is simply how Praneeth summed up their sixth meeting where the World No 30 Praneeth leads 5-1 now.