Viktor Axelsen and Ratchanok Intanon recaptured their titles at the Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2019 with straight-game victories today.
While Axelsen thwarted a second-game fightback from Kidambi Srikanth, 21-7 22-20, Intanon beat He Bingjiao for the first time in five matches, 21-15 21-14.
After a quick first game loss, local favourite Kidambi picked himself up and proved a feisty competitor. He had two game points at 20-18, but Axelsen refused to concede the advantage, and closed out the match in straight games.
“Now I can say that I have put the injury behind me,” said Axelsen.
“It has taken a lot of time and Srikanth here knows how an injury can take a toll and how long it takes to come back to normal fitness and level of play. So I am just happy the way I came back.”
“It is great to win the tournament. I don’t know what to say, it is always a confident boost, especially after the All England final, it is nice to win here.
“It was easier to control in the first game and in the second game Srikanth stepped up. We were so close, and it is small things which makes the difference. So you never know what would have happened if Srikanth had won the second game.
“You need a little bit of luck, I had a lucky net cord. It is not far from failure to success, that’s how sports is, it is fragile.”
A short while earlier, Intanon celebrated her first victory against China’s He Bingjiao.
“I think mentality is the most important thing, and I think today my mentality was better than hers. I know that she has good skills and I was not surprised when she played difficult shots,” said Intanon.
“People say I play really well here at the India Open. Before I came to the main hall, I saw my record against her and it was 0-4 and I thought I need to break this record today. I tried to play calmly and point-by-point and I played well.”
Play of the Day | Majestic defence from the towering Dane 🇩🇰 Viktor Axelsen 🏸#HSBCBWFbadminton #HSBCRaceToGuangzhou pic.twitter.com/h9RF1IaRwg
— BWF (@bwfmedia) March 31, 2019