Bangkok, August 5: India’s ace shuttler-duo Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty have become the first Indian pair to win the BWF Super 500 badminton tournament. the pair beat World champions Li Jun Hui and Liu Yu Chen of China in the summit clash of Thailand Open 21-19, 18-21, 21-18 in Bangkok.
The third-seeded Chinese pair settled for the second position after battling hard for an hour and two minutes as the Commonwealth Games silver medallists Rankireddy-Shetty claimed their maiden title.
This was not only their first triumph at Super 500 level and above but also the most prestigious doubles title for India since the inception of the ranking system. This achievement will also propel the current World No. 16 Indian combination into the top 10 for the first time, making it the first-ever Indian men's doubles duo to enter the elite bracket. Intelligent rotation of the shuttle combined with Rankireddy's powerful smashes flummoxed the world's second-best pair whose every comeback was thwarted by the ever-alert Indians.
"we were very excited to play our first final. I have some shoulder issues so we had decided that I would play more from the front and Chirag from the back. I was focussing more on the service and the net. We just stuck to our plan of keeping the shuttle low and not hurrying through the points. I think that really worked and that helped us get the lead at 8-6,” said Satwiksairaj Rankireddy after victory.
“It's the biggest title we have won so far in our career. Right now I am out of words after playing in a final and beating the current world champions. I am extremely happy,” – Chirag Shetty