Sameer Verma enters final of Hyderabad Open badminton

Sameer Verma came back strongly after losing the first game to notch up a creditable 16-21, 21-15, 21-11 win in the semifinal against Guru Sai Dutt.

Sameer Verma in action during his semifinal match against R.M.V. Guru Sai Dutt.   -  V.V. SUBRAHMANYAM

For R.M.V. Guru Sai Dutt, it was a serious test of big-match temperament. And, he failed to raise the bar as top-seeded Sameer Verma came back strongly after losing the first game to notch up a creditable 16-21, 21-15, 21-11 win in the men’s singles semifinal of the Hyderabad Open badminton championship at the Gachibowli Indoor Stadium here on Saturday.

Once again, grit and determination which are typical traits of Sameer were to the fore as he switched gears in the crucial decider after Guru Sai Dutt was off to an impressive start in the first game with his wonderful placements and big smashes down the centre.

The beginning of the second game saw a keen tussle for supremacy with little to choose between them but once Sameer took a crucial 11-8 lead, he never really looked back essaying his trade-mark down-the-line strokes and showing better control at the net.

On the other hand, Guru Sai Dutt was a picture of disappointment as his game went awry in the decider and he couldn’t even get the length of his returns right.

In the other men’s singles semifinal, Joo Ven Soong of Malaysia recorded a surprise 21-17, 21-14 win over seventh-seeded Indonesian Abdul Kholik Firman.

India’s top-seeded doubles combinations had a good outing with mixed pair of Pranaav J. Chopra and N. Sikki Reddy and men’s duo of R. Satwiksairaj and Chirag Shetty making it to the finals.

The results:

All semifinals: Men’s singles: Sameer Verma (Ind) bt R.M.V. Guru Sai Dutt (Ind) 16-21, 21-15, 21-11; Joo Ven Soong (Mas) bt Abdul Kholik Firman (Ina) 21-17, 21-14.

Doubles: R. Satwiksairaj & Chirag Shetty (Ind) bt Arun George & Sanyam Shukla (Ind) 21-14, 21-6; Cayhono Akbar Bingang & Isfahani Mohd Reza Pahlevi (Ina) bt Mohamad Arif Ab Latif Arif & Nur Mohd Azriyn Ayub Azriyn (Mas) 21-14, 15-10 retd.

Women’s singles: Deng Joy Xuan (Hkg) bt Jia Min Yeo (Sgp) 21-7, 21-14; Kim Ga Eun (Kor) bt Yu Jin Sim (Kor) 21-13, 17-21, 21-15.

Doubles: Ng Tsz Yau & Sing Ying Yuen (Hkg) bt Imanuela Agatha & Ramadhanti Siti Fadia Silva (Ina) 16-21, 21-14, 21-19; Hoo Vivian & Cheng Wen Yap (Mas) bt Barkah Yulfira Jauza Fadhila Sugiarto (Ina) 16-21, 21-11, 21-14.

Mixed doubles: Pranaav J Chopra & N. Sikki Reddy (Ind) bt Chang Tak Ching & Ng Wing Yung (Hkg) 21-19, 21-15; Cayhono Akbar Bintang & Kandow Winny Oktavina (Ina) bt Samosir Renaldi & Julimarbela Hediana (Ina) 22-20, 21-13.