Vitidsarn upsets top seed to clinch India Open title

Vitidsarn ended Viktor Axelsen juggernaut to win the men's singles title

Thailand's Kunlavut Vitidsarn poses with his medal. — Supplied photo
Thailand's Kunlavut Vitidsarn poses with his medal. — Supplied photo

By Team KT

Published: Sun 22 Jan 2023, 8:07 PM

Thailand's Kunlavut Vitidsarn and South Korea's An Se Young defeated their more fancied opponents to clinch the men’s and women’s singles titles respectively in the Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2023.

Vitidsarn, who had lost all the six men’s singles matches against top seed Axelsen before Sunday, engaged the tall Dane in long rallies in the decider before prevailing 22-20, 10-21, 21-12 in an hour and four minutes before Young got the better of Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi 15-21, 21-16, 21-12 in just over an hour.

The Thai shuttler was the underdog going into the summit clash against Axelsen, who had last lost a final in May 2021 and had been unbeaten in 13 thereafter, but showed little nerves as he stuck to the game plan of controlling the pace of the rallies and push the Olympic and world champion into longer rallies.

“From my earlier loses against Viktor, I had learnt that if I could engage him in long rallies and take the match to the decider then I have a chance to win. I could manage to do that today and even after losing the second game, I believed that I can win,” he said.

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