Kidambi Srikanth continued his magnificent run of form at the Superseries events and defeated Japan's Kenta Nishimoto 21-14, 21-13 in the French Open final to became the first Indian player to win four Superseries titles in a year. He also became the first Indian to win the French Open.
In the second head-to-head encounter at a Superseries event, Srikanth drew first blood, but the Japanese matched him toe-to-toe and levelled the game at 5-5 before winning the next four points on offer to take the lead at 9-5. But the Indian instantly made a stunning comeback through six consecutive points to lead with two points at the changeover. Srikanth increased the pace of play after that and the Japanese
Nishimoto, who is being touted as the “giant killer” for his ability to take down big players on his day, couldn’t really pose a challenge in the second game either and it seemed to be one-way traffic completely. Srikanth was winning points with effortless ease and at one point in time, led 10-3. Although the Japanese tried to put forward an occasional burst after the mid-game interval, the fatigue of playing his seventh match in just six days caught up with him and Srikanth, who was playing with a strapping below his right knee, took the benefit of that. With a trademark down-the-line smash, the Indian put an end to the one-sided 35-minute contest to become only the fourth player after Lin Dan, Lee Chong Wei, and Chen Long to win four or more men's singles Superseries titles in a calendar year.
Srikanth has become the only Indian to win the French Open since it became a Superseries event in 2007 and in all probability, will also rise to a career-best World No.2 in the world rankings that is supposed to come out on Thursday.
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