Top Indian shuttler H.S. Prannoy reached the men's singles final at the Malaysia Masters 2023 badminton championship while compatriot P.V. Sindhu's women's singles campaign came to an end after a loss in the semifinals, here on Saturday.
World No.9 Prannoy received a walkover in his semifinal clash after Indonesi's Christian Adinata pulled out with an injury towards the end of the first game. It will be his first Malaysia Masters final.
The 30-year-old Prannoy, who has been in sensational form in Malaysia, defeated world No.6, Chou Tien Chen, reigning All-England champion Li Shi Feng and Madrid Masters 2023 winner Kenta Nishimoto en route to the semis.
The Indian shuttler made a clear statement of intent by winning the first seven points of the match. However, world No.57 Adinata, mounted a solid comeback to level things up at 15-15.
With Prannoy leading 19-17, Christian Adinata suffered an unfortunate injury and had to pull out of the match, handing the win to the Indian badminton player at the BWF World Tour Super 500 event.
Prannoy will face the winner of the other semifinal clash between Chinese Taipei's Lin Chun-Yi and the People's Republic of China's Weng Hong Yang in the title decider on Sunday. This will be Prannoy's first final appearance since losing the decider of the 2022 Swiss Open to Jonatan Christie last year.
On the other hand, two-time Olympic medallist Sindhu lost 21-14, 21-17 to another Indonesian, world No.9 Gregoria Mariska Tunjung, in the women's singles semifinals.
World No.13 Sindhu was the more dominant player in the early phase of the first game and took a three-point lead into the break. However, Gregoria, who beat Sindhu in the Madrid Masters final last month, kicked up a gear or two after the restart and took control of the match.
The Indonesian won 13 of the next 16 points to pocket the opening game with ease.
Fighting for survival, Sindhu started the second game well. But with the Indian leading 4-1, Gregoria, once again, upped her game and the Indian shuttler failed to match the intensity and succumbed to a defeat in 40 minutes.
This was Tunjung's second straight victory over PV Sindhu. The previous seven were won by the Indian player.