The Rise of India's Men's Singles
The quarterfinals of the Indonesian Masters 2021 will start today, 19 November 2021 at 12 pm Central Indonesia Time. India’s men’s singles players are really on fire. At this point, India has secured one ticket to the semifinal round. It’s an achievement that hasn’t happened for so long.
At this quarterfinals round, two of India’s representatives will have to play against each other: Srikanth Kidambi vs H.S. Prannoy. Based on the records of their previous meetings, Srikanth has more advantages. In the last 6 matches between the two, Srikanth won 4 of them. Besides, he’s currently ranked #15, far better than Prannoy who’s currently ranked #32.
Srikanth has been giving his all at the Indonesian Masters 2021. In the round of 16, he defeated Indonesia’s Jonatan Christie in a rubber set game 13-21, 21-18, 21-15. This victory made him in a leading position in the history of their meetings with 4-3.
Prannoy, on the other hand, made a giant surprise by defeating Tokyo 2020 Olympics gold medalist Viktor Axelsen from Denmark in three games 14-21, 21-19, 21-16. It’s actually his first victory in his last 5 matches.
In 2021, Srikanth has made it through to the semifinal round three times: at the Swiss Open, the Hylo Open, and now at the Indonesia Masters 2021. So far, no representative from India has ever stepped on the podium of the champion in men’s singles.
The competition in the men’s singles has also lessen since Lee Zii Jia from Malaysia and Anthony Sinisuka Ginting from Indonesia had lost in the round of 16. Lee Zii Jia, the All England 2021 champion, had to retire 9-11 at the first game due to injury. Meanwhile, Ginting who’s the fifth seed, was beaten by Kunlavut Vitidsarn from Thailand in three games 21-19, 14021, 13-21.
The loss of Axelsen, Lee, and Ginting, opened the opportunity for Kento Momota to win the event with a total prize of USD600,000. At the quarterfinals, Momota will be up against Denmark’s Rasmus Gemke, whom Momota had always successfully defeated in their previous 4 meetings.
In the women’s doubles, a surprise happened when the second seed Ratchanok Intanon was defeated by her compatriot Phittayaporn Chaiwan in a rubber set 18-21, 21-12, 21-17. The top seed Akane Yamaguchi from Japan had to work very hard to make it to the quarterfinals. She had to play three games 21-17, 14-21, 21-16 against Kim Gaeun from Korea.
The hottest match will be at the men’s doubles as the top seed Marcus Fernaldi Gideon/Kevin Sanjaya will be the one to keep Indonesia’s honor as the host of the tournament after their senior Hendra Setiawan/Mohammad Ahsan got defeated. Tough opponents such as Tokyo 2020 Olympics gold medalist Lee Yang/Wang Chi-Lin from Chinese Taipei and Aaron Chia/Soh Wooi Yik from Malaysia are ready to put an end to the Minions’ journey at the Indonesia Masters 2021.