A first for Sindhu, Kashyap
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World No.24 and second seed PV Sindhu quelled the challenge of Thailand's third seed Sapsiree Taerattanachai 21-12, 21-14 to enter the final of the Syed Modi International India Grand Prix Gold Tournament on Saturday.
This will be Sindhu's first appearance in the final of a Grand Prix Gold tournament. Men's second seed Parupalli Kashyap too achieved a similar feat.
Kashyap kept hopes of a title alive when he defeated third seeded Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia 21-18, 23-21 in the semis in 46 minutes. Kashyap maintained the lead from the start of the first game though Sugiarto came close to challenging the Indian at 17-16, Kashyap kept his calm and prevailed.
The second game witnessed a strong fightback from Sugiarto, who levelled at 19-19 after trailing 14-19.
Sugiarto led for the first time at 21-20 but gave up the advantage after committing a service fault. Kashyap ensured he didn't throw away the chance to wrap up the match and won 23-21. "I am happy with the victory as I played smartly. If I win the final, the victory will be a memorable one as this is my first Grand Prix Gold final," Kashyap said.
Sindhu will face 7th seed Lindaweni Fanetri of Indonesia, who outclassed sixth seed Nozomi Okuhara of Japan 22-20, 21-16. Kashyap will be up against 14th seed Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk of Thailand, who upset fifth seed Alamsyah Yunus of Indonesia 21-14, 21-17 in the semi-finals.
For Sindhu overcoming Sapsiree was a rewarding experience because in the last edition of this tournament she had lost to the same opponent in the second round. Sindhu dominated the proceedings after the scores were level at 3-3 early in the match. Sindhu easily took a 20-12 lead and then hit a smash winner to catch Sapsiree on the wrong foot and won the game 21-12. In the second game too Sindhu dominated with better speed and anticipation.
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