India’s ace shuttler Kidambi Srikanth, with his terrific performance, outclassed Rio champion Chen Long to earn the Australia Open Super Series men’s singles title on Sunday. Srikanth won in straight games 22-20, 21-16 to win his career’s fourth Super Series title.
With this win, Srikanth registered his second straight super series title after he won the Indonesia Open Super Series crown and also became the first Indian shuttler to do so. The Indian badminton star produced one of the best displays of his career to completely outwit and outplay the World No.6 Chen Long.
Srikanth had reached the final of the Singapore Open in April and Indonesia Open before this tournament and has thus, become only the fifth player in the world and the first Indian male shuttler to contest three consecutive Super Series finals.
The two players had met five times before the Australian Open final with the Chinese shuttler Chen Long triumphing all five times.
Srikanth and Chen Long were fighting neck-to-neck in the early exchanges but the Srikanth quickly hit his stride to go into the break 11-9 up. The Chinese shuttler made a mini comeback to take a 12-11 lead but Srikanth refused to give in.
Both the players battled hard for the supremacy and there was nothing separating the two at 20-20. But it was Srikanth who held his nerves to win two consecutive points to take the first game 22-20.