The 2015 World’s number one Saina Nehwal outpowered her Thai counterpart Ratchanok Intanon to become the first Indian player to clinch the India Open (in 2015). Later in the same tournament, her national team compatriot Kidambi Srikanth was given a run for his money by Viktor Axelsen, but Srikanth managed to get the better of him at last.
Nehwal, on her part, eases past Ratchanok Intanon as she completely outwitted her with the scores reading 21-16, 21-14. The crowd was fanatic on the day and that – in some way – played a bit-part in Nehwal’s triumph.
Her victory set the tone for Srikanth and the shuttler, after his game, went on to say:
“It was good that Saina won before my match. It gave me confidence.”
Saina started off in style as he had a lead of 5-2, and the then 20-year-old Thai was not a walk in the park, and soon after, the scores stood at 12-10. Smashes were flying and Nehwal regained her advantage with the scores now reading at 18-10. The Indian professional further went to give six more points before settling the first game at 21-16.
The second game was Saina’s to lose as the draining confidence of the young Thai was evident. Saina took the lead this time as well and began to dominate Intanon with her fierce strikes. Intanon never really came close to Nehwal in the second game as she was giving away some cheap points. In an utter dominance, Nehwal finished the second game with the scores standing at 21-14, and the title was her’s.