Kidambi Srikanth entered the final of the the USD 120,000 Swiss Grand Prix Gold badminton championship after he got the better of compatriot Ajay Jayaram in an all-India last-four clash in Basel on Saturday.
Top seed Srikanth had to fight his way back from one game down to emerge 17-21 21-15 21-18 victorious over Jayaram in a thrilling 50-minute semifinal match at the St Jakobshalle stadium.
World number four Srikanth will take on the winner of the other semifinal match between Xue Song and Viktor Axelsen in the final, scheduled to be held tomorrow.
The opening game went neck-and-neck till 6-6, after which Jayaram snatched six straight points to open up a 12-6 lead and from there on Srikanth played catching-up before losing it 17-21.
The top seeded shuttler, however, bounced back in remarkable fashion by winning the second game.
Even though Jayaram took an upper hand by first moving 5-2 up and then making it 12-8 at one stage, Srikanth maintained his cool as he slowly and steadily clawed back in to the game.
He first reeled off four points on the trot to level the scores 12-12 and then snatched three more points to overtake his opponent. There was no looking back for Srikanth from there on and he eventually clinched the game 21-15 to take it to the decider.
In the third game, Srikanth moved ahead quickly to grab a 12-6 lead before Jayaram gave him a scare by levelling the scores after earning six successive points.
But the higher ranked Srikanth held on to his nerves to take a slender lead again. And this time he made sure not to let the advantage slip. Srikanth maintained a slight edge and finally sealed the issue 21-18.