<
>

Carolina Marin routs PV Sindhu in Swiss Open final

EPA/Bagus Indahono

Carolina Marin beat PV Sindhu 21-12, 21-5 in the final of the 2021 Yonex Swiss Open in Basel on Sunday. The World No. 3 from Spain, who has had a sensational start to the year, winning the two Thailand Opens and reaching the final of the World Tour Finals, made short work of the match against the World No. 7 Indian.

The first game started with Marin winning the first point after having started in typical aggressive fashion. But what followed was an exciting passage of play where serve was exchanged at every point until Sindhu won three straight to make it 6-4. This preceded a sequence of five consecutive points won by Marin, with the Spaniard going into the break 11-8 up.

From that point, there was no catching Marin as she raced to a 15-8 lead with a combination of deceptive drops and powerful smashes. A well-executed clear from Sindhu landed to make it 15-9, before a Marin error after good defensive work from the Indian made it 15-10. But the respite was shortlived as a series of smashes at the frontcourt made it 19-10 to Marin. Sindhu fought to win two more points, but Marin wrapped up the first game 21-12.

Marin started the second game where she left off in the first. Sindhu's first point in the second game was the sixth of the game. A missed smash at the net encapsulated Sindhu's form in the game as Marin raced to an 11-2 lead at the break.

Sindhu won just three more points (a Marin smash that landed just wide, and two regulation lifts that didn't clear the net) in the game as Marin dominated the rallies to take the game 21-5.

Marin had beaten World Nos. 11 and 16 Pornpawee Chochuwong and Beiwen Zhang in the earlier rounds while Sindhu had gotten the better of World Nos. 13 and 12 Busanan Ongbamrungphan and World No. 12 Mia Blichfeldt.

Earlier World No. 2 Viktor Axelsen had won the men's singles event beating rising Thai star Kunlavut Vitidsarn 21-16, 21-6.

Despite the loss, making the final improves Sindhu's chances of qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics as the Swiss Open, a BWF World Tour Super 300 event, is the first of seven events till June 15 that will count toward Olympic qualification.