Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty became the first Indian men’s doubles pair to reach a World Tour 750 final.
They continued their dream run sailing into the finals of the French Open Super 750 with a straight-game win over Japan’s Hiroyuki Endo and Yuta Watanabe. In a thrilling match, Satwik and Chirag, ranked 11 in the world, beat the world No 6 pair of Endo and Watanabe 21-11, 25-23 in 50 minutes.
The Indian pair took the first game easily in just 15 minutes, but the Japanese pair fought hard in a dramatic second game.
The higher-ranked pair saved multiple match points and gave us the moment of the match, perhaps the tournament, winning a stunning rally to save the third match point in the second game.
The swift, 50-shot rally saw all four players hit some jaw-dropping shots from all across the court to push them to their limits. The drops and flicks had the audience enthralled and the players drained as they were practically flat on the ground by the time the point ended.
However, the determined Indian duo eventually didn’t let the gruelling rally affect their rhythm much and emerged victorious.
In the tournament so far, they have defeated the reigning world champions Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan and knocked out world No 9 Kim Astrup and Anders Rasmussen. The Indians will take on top seeds Marcus Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo in the final on Sunday.
Here’s the 50-shot rally:
With PTI Inputs