In-form shuttler HS Prannoy clinched his second Grand Prix Gold badminton tournament title by notching up a straight game victory over Marc Zwiebler of Germany in the summit clash of the Swiss Open here today.
Seeded 13th in the USD 120,000 tournament, Prannoy outclassed seventh seeded Zwiebler 21-18 21-15 in a 45-minute final.
The 23-year-old Prannoy, who had won the Indonesia Open Grand Prix Gold in 2014, had been in fine touch with wins over higher ranked players, including Rajiv Ouseph of England, in this tournament.
Prannoy began the match on a confident note and surged to a 7-4 lead in the first game before the German, ranked 19th as compared to the Indian's 27th, fought his way back into the match.
The two rivals were tied at 18-18 and it was from there that the Indian took three straight points at a crucial juncture to take the opening game 21-18.
With the opening game in his pocket, Prannoy grew in confidence as he outclassed his more experienced German rival in the second game to win the match. The Indian led the second game from start to finish with the German playing a catch-up game.
Prannoy opened up a 3-0 lead and then increased the gap to 13-8. Though Zwiebler narrowed down the gap in scoreline a bit, Prannoy was in no mood to squander the advantage and held on to his nerves to take three straight points towards the end to clinch the second game and the match.
"I am extremely happy to win this title. This should take me to the 20th spot in world ranking and I would like to give Olympics qualification one more effort by playing well in the next tournaments before the May deadline," Prannoy told PTI over the phone from Switzerland.
Top seed in the women's singles, Saina Nehwal had lost to third seed Wang Yihan of China 11-21 19-21 in the semifinals.
Feature image source: PTI