BWF World Tour Finals: Kunlavut Vitidsarn continued his winning streak

Kunlavut Vitidsarn defeated Kidambi Srikanth in straight games 21-18, 21-7 in his second Group-B match. The Thailand shuttler took just 46 minutes to overcome the Indian shuttler. World no.14 Srikanth endangered his chances of making it to the knockout stage after facing an unexpected loss to Vitidsarn. Three-time Junior World champion Vitidsarn defeated Srikanth for the third consecutive time. Vitidsarn defeated him at the Sudirman Cup in September and Asia Team Championships last year. Earlier, The Indian shuttler had reached the knockout stage in the 2014 edition of BWF World Tour Finals.

The fast-rising Thailand shuttler was rewarded for his immaculate defense as he never allowed Srikanth to mount his attack. Though Srikanth showed good determination and dedication, he was unable to find a strong way to surpass Vitidsarn. World no.23 delivered his best on the day and never lacked commitment. Vitidsarn had an early advantage with a 5-2 lead in the first game.

He carried on the momentum and went into the break with a healthy 11-6 lead. However, Srikanth fought back and earned six-point to narrow the lead down to 13-15. But the Thai shuttler raised his pace and marched ahead to 19-14. Finally, Vitidsarn pocketed the opening game with a brilliant game.

The second game was one-way traffic as Vitidsarn never gave a chance for Srikanth to bounce back. Srikanth tried to match his rival but ended up making more unforced errors. The play was also suspended in the middle due to poor visibility. Srikanth lagging 6-13, found it hard to find his rhythm. Vitidsarn grabbed the opportunities well and closed out the match quickly by taking the next 8 points.

Malaysian second seed Lee Zii Jia is at the top of Group-B with two points. Srikanth and Vitidsarn have shared a point each after registering one victory and one loss. Vitidsarn will meet Toma Junior Popov of France next. Srikanth will be up against Lee Zii Jia in his third match. The winner will earn more points to finish in the top 2 and qualify for the knockout stage. If both the shuttlers win their respective matches, it will be decided on the number of games won and lost.

Former WTF champion PV Sindhu advanced to the knockout stage of the BWF World Tour Finals with a straight-game win over Germany’s Yvonne Li. Sindhu outplayed the German 21-10, 21-13 in 31 minutes. The young Indian shuttler Lakshya Sen made it to the semifinals after his opponent Kento Momota retired with a back injury. Rasmus Gemke of Denmark also left in the middle due to a knee injury. Lakshya and Axelsen are set to qualify from Group – A.