Lakshya Sen vs Srikanth Kidambi: History, records, recent form, where to watch
The first all-Indian BWF World Championships semi-final clash is set to take place on Saturday night and all eyes are on the two Indian shuttlers vying for a place in the final.
The final BWF tournament of the year has been witness to a mixed set of events for India. At the round of 16 stage, there were 7 Indians in contention to win a medal. This number was reduced to 4 in the quarterfinal stage and was further reduced with the elimination of PV Sindhu and HS Prannoy. As luck would have it, Lakshya Sen and Kidambi Srikanth are the only remaining Indians and they will face each other tonight in the Men's Singles semi-final clash.
Almora-born Lakshya Sen has been training in the Prakash Padukone Academy in Bangalore. His father DK Sen has been his coach since he first began playing and he is also mentored by Prakash Padukone. He announced himself to the world at the 2018 Youth World Olympics where he won Gold. He finished runners-up at the Dutch Open held a few months ago.
Kidambi Srikanth has been trained in the Gopichand Badminton Academy in Hyderabad under the tutelage of Pullella Gopichand. He is also assisted by South Korean Park Tae Sang in his singles matches. Srikanth has never won a medal at a major BWF tournament but has a brilliant record at the Commonwealth and Asian Games.
The two shuttlers have never faced each other and this clash will prove to be of relevance to both considering the stakes of reaching the final are high. Lakshya Sen is competing in the BWF World Championships for the first time so his assured medal finish is a brilliant first-time outing. Kidambi Srikanth is playing in his 6th BWF World Championships event and has never reached the semi-finals before. His highest finish was at the 2017 event where he was knocked out in the quarterfinals.
Between the two Srikanth has the most amount of experience and will be raring to reach the final. He has an excellent record against fellow Indian shuttlers with the overall score being 36-11 in favour of him. This record has played out brilliantly in the past 20 matches with the score being 17-3. Kidambi Srikanth has been brilliant this tournament and has dropped only one set in the run-up to the final. He defeated two Chinese shuttlers namely Li Feng and Lu Zu in the round of 32 and the round of 16.
Lakshya Sen might be inexperienced but his form in this tournament has been exceptional. He has dropped only 2 sets in the run-up to the final where he defeated 15th seed Kenta Nishimoto in the round of 32. In the round of 16, he defeated Olympian Kevin Cordon who finished 4th in Tokyo this year. This was followed by eliminating Zhao Peng of China with a brilliant comeback victory.
Where to Watch?
The match can be viewed on Hotstar and SonySports. The Bridge will also be bringing you live updates of the match with the expected time around 9:30pm IST.
Given the form and timing of the match, there is no doubt about the nature of the match. Both Lakshya Sen and Kidambi Srikanth have proved their doubters wrong and have their eyes set on the final and a possible gold medal.