Saina Nehwal powered into the final of the Swiss Open GP Gold on Saturday, making up for a disappointing show at the All England. Saina recovered from the loss of the second game to get past world No.9 Bae Young Joo of Korea 21-19 13-21 21-14 in just under an hour.
The Indian world No.5 will take on either Juliane Schenk of Germany or Sung Ji Hyun of Korea in the final.
Saina had her hands full in the opening game, with Bae maintaining a lead throughout. At 14-6 in the Korean’s favour, it looked like she would coast ahead, but Saina fought to stay in the game and spectacularly caught up with her at 17-all. From then it was a close battle, with the Indian edging past 21-19.
The effort seemed to have taken its toll, as the Korean rocketed 11-3 ahead and maintained a steady lead to take the second game at 21-13. The third game however was the exact opposite, for it was Saina’s turn to create an early lead, and the closest Bae came was 13-15, but the Indian again stepped on the gas from there to take the set and game.
Earlier, Saina had reached the semis with a 22-20 21-17 result over Bulgarian Petya Nedelcheva. Compatriot Ajay Jayaram’s impressive run into the quarterfinals came to an end when he ran into former Asian champion Park Sung Hwan, who beat him 21-19 21-19. The other Indians in action, Rupesh Kumar and Sanave Thomas, fell to Chinese Taipei pair Chin Min Fang/ Lee Sheng Mu 21-17 21-13. Rupesh and Sanave had earlier achieved one of their career’s best wins with a 17-21 21-15 21-15 victory over world No.23 pair Mads-Conrad Petersen and Jonas Rasmussen in the second round.
Saina’s route into the final:
Semis: bt 4-Bae Youn Joo (Kor) 21-19 13-21 21-14
Quarters: bt Petya Nedelcheva (Bul) 22-20 21-17
2nd round: bt Eriko Hirose (Jpn) 21-15 17-21 21-11
1st round: bt Sashina Vignes Waran (Fra) 23-21 21-9