CWG: Shuttler Srikanth in final; Prannoy to play for bronze

Lee Chong Wei

"This is going to be my last Games and I think winning against the new World No. 1 was a good feeling".

Srikanth had earlier defeated Chong Wei in the crucial men's singles final of India's mixed team gold medal match against Malaysia, which India went on to win.

Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak congratulated Datuk Lee Chong Wei for contributing a gold medal in the men's single final at the 2018 Commonwealth Games today.

Lee eventually gathered pace and made it all square at 19-19, but that was it for the Malaysian in the first game as Kidambi clinched the round 21-19. Srikanth troubled Lee during the initial stages with his powerful smashes.

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The smashes that were landing outside in the opening game became just the bit accurate and hard for the Indian to retrieve. He lost 21-19, 14-21, 14-21 to Malaysia's Lee Chong Wei to seal India's 19th silver and 65th medal overall in this edition.

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With a wealth of experience behind him, the three-time Olympic silver medalist will start the gold medal match as favorite but he has to be at his best to fend away the threat from the in-form Indian shuttler. But Lee shook off his initial troubles to gradually come into own and subdue his younger rival with an awesome performance.

The men's final of the Commonwealth Games saw Srikanth, the world number one, pitted against Chong Wei, the world number seven. A smash into Lee's body gave Srikanth the lead at 16-15 before the Malaysian drew level yet again with a superb placement.

Lengthy Malaysia's number one sportsman, " Chong Wei has not slipped the podium at the Olympics or world championships using a career tally of 7 medals in big leagues. That turned out to be the only bit of celebration that Srikanth and his Indian fans among the sell-out crowd will manage on the day. Srikanth had started well, taking the the lead initially. The Malaysian continued his domination in the third and final game, opening up an early lead.

Srikanth went some way to justifying his lofty ranking as he raced ahead 21-19 in the first game of the final on Australia's Gold Coast. In a close fought encounter, both Kidambi and Lee were breathing heavily on the neck of each other, hardly allowing an inch of space to gather points.

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