DUBAI: India’s challenge ended at the BWF Superseries Finals after Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth lost their respective women’s and men’s singles matches on Friday in the progressing BWF-Superseries Finals at the Hamdan Sports Complex, here in Dubai.
(Image Courtesy: timesofindia.indiatimes.com).
Having won one match and lost one match on her cards, Saina had to win her final league match against Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan but she went down after winning the first game but, could not make it and bowed out of the tournament 21-16, 18-21, 14-21 that lasted 50 minutes.
Okuhara, having won all three matches, emerged on top of Group A in the women’s Singles category, while Marin is the second best. in the group.
Saina had everything to play as she showed determination in the match, but unfortunately could not maintain the tempo till the end.
The opening game was a closely-fought affair. Although Saina opened up a 3-1 lead, her rival kept breathing down her neck to catch her up first at 5-5 and then at 9-9 before the Indian went into the break with a slender 11-9 edge. From here Saina used her net play and smashes effectively, which was sidelined by her opponent’s unforced errors. When Saina was in the game point 13-21 Tzu Ying saved three match points, but Saina maintained her composure to seal the opening game with a cross court smash to run away with the game 21-16.
In the second game, Saina owing to a number of unforced errors was behind Tai at 5-11 at the brea and Tai moved up to 13-5. But Saina fought her way back and won four points to reduce the points gap to 9-13 and then another four points to further lessen the margin to 14-16 before equalling at 16-16. Tzu Ying was also frequently hitting the shuttle on the net.
However, the Taipei girl kept her nerves intact to secure three consecutive points to once again take a 20-16 lead. Saina saved two game points, but Tzu Ying bagged that one important point to take the match to the decider.
Saina completely ran out of steam in third game. Tzu Ying started the third game with a 4-1 lead and then continued to surge ahead to 17-9 before wrapping it up rather comfortably in the end.
With Saina losing two out of three matches, Carolina Marin and Nozomi Okuhara have advanced to the next round.