The star doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty stormed into the final of the Swiss Open Super Series 300 badminton event at Basel. The second-seeded and world number six duo defeated third-seeded pair Ong Yew Sin and Teo Ee Yi of Malaysia 21-19 17-21 21-17 in a thrilling semifinal that lasted one hour and nine minutes.
By winning the game, Satwik and Chirag had drawn level 3-3 with Ong and Teo in a head-to-head record. Earlier, the Indian duo defeated the Danish pair of Jeppe Bay and Lasse Molhede 15-21, 21-11, and 21-14 in the quarterfinals.
Satwik and Chirag, the 2022 World Championships bronze medallist, will next face unseeded Chinese pair Ren Xiang Yu and Tan Qiang in the final clash on Sunday.
Satwik-Chirag are the only Indian contenders left in the tournament. Other star players including PV Sindhu, Lakshya Sen, and HS Prannoy suffered early defeats. The duo will now face the Malaysian pair of Ong Yew Sin and Teo Ee Yi late on Saturday night.
Shuttler PV Sindhu failed to defend her Swiss Open Super 300 badminton title as she suffered a loss to unseeded Putri Kusuma Wardani of Indonesia in a three-game women's singles second-round match. Sindhu, seeded fourth was stunned 15-21 21-12 18-21 by the 38th-ranked Wardani in their first-ever clash at the international level.
Earlier on Thursday, fifth-seeded H S Prannoy bowed out of the second-round exit after losing in straight games against unseeded Christo Popov of France. Prannoy who was favourite in the contest, had an underwhelming performance against the world No. 40 Popov as he failed to give any fight, losing 8-21 8-21, he made an exit from the men's singles event.
However, it was Kidambi Srikanth, who was the first to crash out on Thursday. Hong Kong's Cheuk Yiu Lee defeated Srikanth. Srikanth is placed 20th in the world against his rival's 19th position. It was a thrilling match but Lee kept his composure to register a 22-20 21-17 win in the singles pre-quarterfinal contest.
National champion Mithun Manjunath also exited the tournament in the second round, losing 19-21 10-21 to Chia Hao Lee of Chinese Taipei.
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