Sunday, December 18, 2011

PV Sindhu wins Tata Open title

2nd seeded PV Sindhu overcame the tough challenge of surprise finalist Sayali Gokhale of Pune, defeating her in the closely contested finals by a score of 21-10 20-22 21-11 to grab the Women's Singles title at the TATA Open India International Challenge 2011 that was held at Mumbai from 14th to 18th Dec-2011.

Sayali had earlier overcame the challenge from 4th seeded Arundhati Pantawane, and PC Thulasi the defending champion who had won the Tata Open the last year, to setup a final clash with PV Sindhu.

With this win, Sindhu who has had a fantastic string of performances this year, having won several international titles, added one more title to her kitty in the form of the Tata Open International challenge title.

The men's singles event had a tougher field with several Indonesian players in the fray. Top seeded Alamsyah Yunus of Indonesia ended the challenge of 2nd seeded Indian RMV Gurusai Dutt in the finals defeating him 21-17 24-22. Arvind Bhat and Indonesian Shesar Rhustavito were the losing semi-finalists.

In the men's doubles Pranav Chopra and Akshay Dewalkar created a big upset by defeating India's top men's doubles pair of Rupesh Kumar & Sanave Thomas by a score of 19-21 21-17 23-21 in a thrilling final match. This surprise result augurs well for the future of Indian badminton which has long been dependant on the performances of only some of the star pairs in international doubles events.

The remaining two titles at the Tata Open-2011, the women's doubles and the mixed doubles, were clinched by Indonesian pairs. The Indian pair of Arun Vishnu / Aparna Balan finished as the losing semi-finalists in the mixed doubles event.


Saina Nehwal wins Silver at Li Ning BWF World Superseries Finals 2011

World no.4 Saina Nehwal finally ended her mostly dry run of this year with a bang as she clinched the Silver medal at the Li Ning BWF World Superseries Finals 2011.

Saina fought well in the finals stretching her opponent the reigning world no.1 Yihan Wang of China to three sets before eventually losing 18-21 21-13 21-13 in the closely contested final match. Earlier Saina had defeated world no.5 Tine Baun of Denmark in straight sets 21-17 21-18 in the semi-finals.

The BWF World Superseries finals is one of the world's most prestigious badminton events in which all the top badminton players of the world participate.

Compared to last year when Saina was on a roll, this year was difficult for her, plagued as she was with lack of fitness and form. Her only notable title win of this year was the Swiss Open Grand Prix which she had won in March-2011. She had also won Silver medals at the Malaysia open grand prix gold and the Indonesia open superseries premier tournaments this year. But other than these performances, most of 2011 did not manage to bring much glee to her badminton fans.

However with this creditable performance at the BWF World Superseries Finals, she looks to have got back the spark again, and looks all set for a great performance at the forthcoming Olympics which is to be held in London the next year.

While Yihan Wang grabbed the Gold medal in the Women's Singles, Lin Dan also of China clinched the men's singles title.

The results in the doubles sections were also mostly in favour of the Chinese, with the pair of Xiaoli Wang / Yang Yu winning the women's doubles title, and Nan Zhang / Yunlei Zhao winning the mixed doubles gold medal. However in the men's doubles with Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen of Denmark overcame the challenge of Biao Chai / Zhendong Guo in the finals, to prevent a clean sweep by the Chinese players.