Sourabh Verma could not produce the magic that helped him reach the final of the Syed Modi International Super 300 tournament on Sunday and went down in straight games against Wang Tzu Wei of Chinese Taipei.
The Indian national champion relies on outlasting his opponents with strong defence but Wang’s aggressive game and booming jump smashes proved too much for the 26-year-old from Dhar. The Taipei shuttler eventually won 21-15, 21-17 in 48 minutes.
With this defeat, India’s stranglehold came to an end. After four straight men’s singles titles, Wang broke the streak at Syed Modi Open while ending his three-year wait for a title win as well.
Verma, who had his younger brother and last year’s champion Sameer in his corner, looked like hitting his groove when he over turned 0-2 deficit to take a 7-4 lead.
His game plan of keeping the shuttle in play long enough to create a clear opening seemed to be working till then. But Wang had a different gear and he raised the tempo to take one-point lead at the break.
Wang then clearly dominated the proceedings to win the first game with relative ease and it looked like he would race through the second game when he took a 5-0 lead.
However, Verma isn’t the one to give up easily and he began mixing up the pace to keep Wang on his toes.
And it looked like his game plan was working when he overcame a 9-13 deficit to level the scores at 14-14 and then stayed neck and neck for the next four points.
He was however guilty of making a flurry of errors and ultimately hit a return long to hand the title to Wang.
Verma, who has four Super 100 titles to his name, has to wait to earn his first Super 300 title.