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Jakarta: Kidambi Srikanth notched-up a comprehensive performance against Kazumasa Sakai of Japan, to win his first ever Indonesia Open Superseries title, in Jakarta, on Sunday.
The Indian shuttler, who had defeated world no 1 Son Wan Ho of South Korea in the semifinals, took just 37 minutes to overcome Sakai's challenge 21-11, 21-19.
The former world no 4 started off well, as he set nudged forward into a slender lead. Sakia, who was looking to play at the nets, was being pushed back by Srikanth early on, as the Indian took a 6-4 lead.
He progressively went on to increase his lead as he gained momentum after the change of ends, finding himself with almost half the task done, leading Sakai 18-9. It was only a matter of time before Srikanth clinched the first game 21-11.
The second game however, presented a completely different challenge. Sakai changed his approach, exhibiting a fleet-footed game, as he covered the court easily. This tactic took Srikanth back a little, as the Japanese surged into an 11-6 lead.
However, Srikanth found new energy after the change of ends, as he levelled the scores up at 13-13, 14-14, and 15-15.
This is when Srikanth upped the ante, bringing out the lobs, the smashes, the drop shots, and the short-arm body smashes. The latter tactic worked brilliantly against Sakai, who did not have time to react to the short-arm jabs.
With the scores level at 19-19, Srikanth produced two more short-arm jabs to clinch the second game, and the match.
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