Second game:
Kazumasa Sakai 15-15 Kidambi Srikanth
He may be behind, but Srikanth is testing Sakai to his wits' end, moving him all around the court. However, Sakai has responded well so far, coming up with the answers on most occasions. He stes up successive smashes to draw level at 13-13. The Indian shuttler has truly gone on the offensive, and takes the lead with another big smash. However, Sakai levels it up again with a drop shot of his own. Playing at the nets, Srikanth plays another body smash to bring the score to level at 15-15.
Kazumasa Sakai 11-6 Kidambi Srikanth
The Japanese shuttler has done well to come back in the second game. He has shown great character to chase the lost causes, and keep himself in the rallies. Srikanth, who does not seem to be too fond of long rallies, comes up with the unforced errors this time.
Kazumasa Sakai 5-3 Kidambi Srikanth
Sakai keeps making the unforced errors, but he comes back strongly with successive smashes against a floored Srikanth. Nothing the Indian could do about that. However, Srikanth comes back with a couple of smashes of his on, forcing Sakai into yet another unforced error.
First Game:
Kazumasa Sakai 11-21 Kidambi Srikanth
Brilliant start by Srikanth! It has been easy going for the former world no 4, here. He has barely been troubled by Sakai, as he negotiated the smashes, and the drop-shots with equal ease.
Kazumasa Sakai 9-18 Kidambi Srikanth
The Japanese shuttler is bringing his smashes into play but Srikanth has not been troubled by that, and forces Sakai to make an unforced error, as he pulls away into a big lead.
Sakai hits it long, but he challenges the umpire's call. This is the first challenge in the men's s ingles final. Review shows that Sakai had hit it just inches out of the byline.
Kazumasa Sakai 8-11 Kidambi Srikanth
It has been a bit of an uneventful start to the final, here in Jakarta, with Srikanth taking a narrow lead over his Japanese opponent. The Indian leads half way through the first game.
Kazumasa Sakai 4-6 Kidambi Srikanth
Srikanth is trying to push Sakai back, but hits it long, early on, as the Players go neck and neck. However, the Indian takes the lead, early on, in the first game.
Both Kazumasa Sakai and Kidambi Srikanth seem to be practicing playing close to the nets. An indication of how the match may pan out, maybe?
The two players are out on the pitch, and are getting set for the final showdown.
Preview : The semifinals of the Indonesia Open Superseries have been rather bittersweet for the Indian badminton fans.
While giantkiller HS Prannoy's dream run, in which he vanquished Olympic silver medallist Lee Chong Wei and Olympic champion Chen Long, to make it through to his first ever ever semifinal appearance at a Superseries event, he ran out of steam in the last four, losing 21-17, 26-28, 21-18 against Japan's Kazumasa Sakai, who now faces Prannoy's compatriot former world no 4 in the summit clash.
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