Already out of contention for the knockouts, world champion PV Sindhu ended her campaign with a consolation win at the BWF World Tour Finals but Kidambi Srikanth had a disappointing finish after yet another close defeat on Friday.
Sindhu, the Olympic silver medallist, notched a 21-18, 21-15 win over world No 13 Pornpawee Chochuwong in her third and final match after suffering defeats in the first two days.
Srikanth, however, went down 21-12 18-21, 19-21 to Hong Kong’s NG Ka Long Angus in what was yet another narrow defeat in a three-game thriller.
“Well I think it was a good finish. Actually until yesterday I still had a chance. Unfortunately the match with Tai went the other way, so I didn’t have a chance. Otherwise, it was a good game,” Sindhu said.
Chochuwong had beaten world No 1 Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan 21-17, 21-11 on Thursday to qualify for the knockout stage.
Sindhu opened up a 9-5 lead early on before entering the interval with a two-point advantage. Chochuwong managed to turn the tables at 15-14 but a determined Sindhu ensured there was no hiccups as she claimed the opening game.
In the second, Sindhu dished out a dominating game as she jumped to a 6-0 lead and then kept moving ahead, keeping her rival at bay to seal the contest without much ado.
“For any athlete, losing two games is going to be hard to come back stronger to, but I think it’s very important from these wins to come back stronger and believe in yourself. I just played my game after yesterday’s upset,” she said.
“Today is a new day and a fresh start. These three tournaments haven’t gone as I had expected and there’s been a lot to learn. After a long gap, I was very excited to be back on court, I think it’s been a good thing. Now I’ll go back home, be happy, take some rest and come back stronger.”
In men’s singles, both the players entered the inconsequential match with a 2-2 head-to-head record.
World No 14 Srikanth once again claimed the opening game after fighting his way from 4-6 down but his opponents, placed eighth in the BWF rankings, rallied to win the next two games and seal the issue in his favour.
In the second game, Srikanth was up 13-10 at one stage but couldn’t capitalise as his rival made a successful comeback.
In the decider, Srikanth was left to do the catching up job throughout before he held a slender 15-14 lead. They were tied 19-19 but the Indian once again failed to go the distance.
(With inputs from PTI)