India’s Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty continued their giant killing run in the Indonesia Masters badminton tournament beating fourth seeds Mads Conrad Petersen/Mads Pieler Kolding of Denmark 21-23, 21-15, 19-21 to reach the semi-finals of the $350,000 prize money event in Jakarta on Friday.
The world number 32 combination, who had upset eighth seeds Takuto Inoue and Yuki Kaneko in the opening round, hit the ground running from the opening game against the Danes as they opened up a 10-3 lead.
However, the experienced combination of Petersen and Kolding clawed back and took the lead for the first time at 18-17 and it looked like the pressure would get to the Indians. But undeterred by the circumstances, Satwik and Shetty won the next four points, only for the Danes to once again restored parity.
Satwik and Shetty, who had defeated the Danes in the French Open last year, finally converted the fourth game point to pocket the first game. The Indian combination, however, could not start the second game well and were always playing catch up after conceding a 4-0 lead at the start.
The decider turned out to be a big test for their skills and temperament as Kolding and Petersen opened up 16-12 lead. But the Indians showed big heart as they went on all out attack with Satwik unleashing his big smashes while Shetty making those crucial interception at the net.
The duo bagged five straight points to first regain the lead at 17-16 and then kept their nerves in the final exchanges. It ultimately took an error from Kodling to hand over the game and match to the young Indian combination after an hour and six minutes.
The unseeded combination will now face top seeds and local favourites Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo on Saturday.
Earlier in the day, former world number one Saina Nehwal got the better of compatriot PV Sindhu 21-13, 21-19 in the women’s singles quarter-finals. She will now face fourth seed Ratchnok Intanon of Thailand in the semis.