Zeenews Sports Bureau
New Delhi: Thailand`s Ratchanok Intanon defeated India's Saina Nehwal in straight sets 21-15, 21-19 to reach the final of the All England Championship.
The 18-year-old displayed some terrific play as she outclassed India's No. 1 who played on a defensive mode for most of the match.
2nd GAME: Ratchanok Intanon wins it 21-19
Intanon once again dominated initially in the game as she was leading 3-1. Saina once again bounced back to level the score 3-3. Intanon later took the lead by three points at 10-7. Saina reduced the deficit by winning the next two points. Intanon once again took a 5-point advantage at 14-9. Saina won two consecutive points there off powerful smashes, 11-14. The 18-year-old Thai once again took a 5-point lead at 17-12. Saina won the next two points and Intanon won the next to lead 18-13. Saina once again reduced the gap and won the next four points. Intanon was clearly looking tired at that stage, but she wasn't given a break. She won the next point as Saina’s return hit the nets, 19-17. Saina won the next point as she deceived her opponent at the nets, 18-19. Saina lost the next point as she misjudged one which landed in, Intanon 20-18. Saina showed great play in the next point and she won it, 19-20. She lost the next point and the match off her own serve as she failed to clear the net.
1st GAME: Ratchanok Intanon wins it 21-15
It was a neck-to-neck fight between the two players in the initial phase of the game but Saina accelerated her game from 4-6 to 10-6. Ratchanok Intanon then won six consecutive points to lead the game at 12-10. Saina then broke her serve but Intanon showed good amount of aggression and Saina couldn’t do much about her powerful smashes. Intanon was leading 20-15 and had five game points and she didn’t lose any. Saina also looked nervous in the later part of the game.
Saina Nehwal won an absorbing contest against former World No.1 Shixian Wang at the National Indoor Arena on Friday to reach the women`s singles semifinals at the All England Open Badminton Championships.
Saina also reached the semis in 2010.