Basel, March 16: The Indian campaign came to an end at the $125,000 Swiss Open Grand Prix Gold as shuttlers P.V. Sindhu and Parupalli Kashyap lost their respective semifinal matches at the St. Jakobshalle here Saturday. Seventh seeded Sindhu came out at the losing end of the women’s singles semifinal as she went down to China’s Sun Yu 21-18, 12-21, 19-21 in a thriller which went down to the wire, lasting one hour and 19 minutes.
Men’s singles third seed Parupalli Kashyap was also knocked out 17-21, 11-21 in 42 minutes by another Chinese — Houwei Tian – in their first ever clash. World No.9 Sindhu started on an aggressive note. Though the Hyderabadi led for most of the first game, Sun kept coming back.
Sindhu moved well on court and came out on top on most occasions during long rallies as the Chinese was not able to keep pace. The World Championship bronze medallist, eventually, clinched the game only on her second game-point. However, Sun responded strongly to race away to an 11-5 lead in the second game as Sindhu’s smashes suddenly lost the venom they had in the first game. The Chinese World No.27 didn’t allow the Indian to fight back and closed the game on her first game-point.
Sun took the momentum into the decider and once again led from the start. She was almost on the verge of winning at 19-14 when Sindhu notched the next four points to make it 18-19. Sun’s cross court smash came at the right time to bag two match-points. The Indian teenager was able to save one but lost the next in close net play to hand Sun the match. The Chinese, who was also responsible for Sindhu’s first round loss last week at the All-England Open, has now increased her career advantage to 3-2 over the Indian.
Sun will next take on compatriot — former World Champion and current World No.3 Yihan Wang in the summit clash. Earlier, a resurgent Kashyap, who has been struggling for form since partially dislocating his shoulder in December, took off well and gave good competition to the Chinese. In the end, he went down closely in the first game. From 12-13 down, Tian showed fantastic spirit to just steal the game away from the World No.25.
The unseeded Tian continued with the impetus in the second game as well, completely dominating the game from the start and didn’t lose sweat to come out on top on his first match-point.