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India Open 2023: Kunlavut Vitidsarn upsets Antony Ginting to set up men’s singles final against Viktor Axelsen

Former world junior champion Kunlavut Vitidsarn of Thailand banked on his strong defense to counter the attacking style of Indonesia’s Anthony Ginting to reach the men’s singles final of the Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2023 at the Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium, here on Saturday.

The 21-year-old rarely made any unforced errors and managed to frustrate his Indonesian opponent in the 58-minute encounter to win 27-25, 21-15 to reach his first Super 750 event final. He will take on top seed Viktor Axelsen of Denmark, who defeated another Indonesian Jonatan Christie 21-6, 21-12.

The women’s singles final would be a repeat of last week’s summit clash at the Malaysia Open Super 1000 event between top seed Akane Yamaguchi of Japan and South Korea’s An Se Young.

In the first men’s singles semi-final, Vitidsarn looked down and out after the initial exchanges as Ginting opened up a 12-6 lead. He, however, managed to turn the tables with his superior retrieving skills to earn two game points. Ginting ended up saving six game points and spurned one of his own before the Thai youngster managed to earn two consecutive points to pocket the opening game.

Ginting began the second game on the front foot once again and had a chance to push the match to the decider till Vitidsarn clinched eight of the nine points from a 13-14 deficit to seal the final berth.

Earlier, two-time world champion Yamaguchi has been in fine form in the new year and Supanida, who had defeated India’s PV Sindhu in the opening round, was no match to her Japanese opponent in the first semifinal.

Yamaguchi banked on bagging points in succession when under pressure to clinch the match 21-17, 21-16.

Young’s route to the final was not that straightforward as she had to fight back after losing the opening game rather tamely to force a decider. Even in the third and final game, the Korean trailed 3-9 and 9-12 before she clinched nine of the next 11 points to open up an 18-14 lead and then wrapped up the match.

Results:

Men’s singles: 8-Kunlavut Vitidsarn (Tha) bt 6-Anthony Ginting (Ina) 27-25, 21-15; 1-Viktor Axelsen (Den) bt 4-Jonatan Christie (Ina) 21-6,

Women’s singles:

1-Akane Yamaguchi (Jpn) bt Supanida Katethong (Tha) 21-17, 21-16; 2-An Se Young (Kor) bt 4-He Bing Jiao (Chn) 11-21, 21-16, 21-16
Women’s doubles: 2-Nami Matsuyama/Chihara Shida (Jpn) bt 8-Pearly Tan/T Muralitharan (Mas) 21-14, 21-16

Mixed doubles:

4-Wang Yi Lyu/Huang Dong Ping (Chn) bt Kim Won Ho/Jeong Na Eun (Kor) 21-15, 12-21, 21-19; 3-Yuta Watanabe/Arisa Higashino (Jpn) bt 1-Zheng Si Wei/Huang Ya Qiong (Chn) 18-21, 21-18, 21-14

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