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Sankar Muthusamy reaches final of BWF World Junior Championship, to play for gold medal on Sunday

Santander [Spain], October 29 (ANI): Indian badminton star S Sankar Muthusamy Subramanian breezed into the men's singles championship match at the World Junior Badminton Championships 2022 in Santander, Spain, on Saturday.

The world No. 4 junior men's singles player defeated Thailand's Panitchaphon Teeraratsakul in the semifinals 21-13, 21-15.

With the victory, Sankar Muthusamy became the first Indian badminton player since Siril Verma in 2016 to reach the finals of a junior world championship. Saina Nehwal, who won the women's singles title in 2008, is still the only junior badminton world champion from India.

Sankar Muthusamy tried to dominate his opponent from the start despite Teeraratsakul's obvious height advantage and longer reach.

The 17-year-old Indian handled the pressure effectively, using sharp angles and through shuttle placing to easily win the first game.

Sankar Muthusamy did well to stay up with the Thai shuttler's attempts to disrupt the Indian's technique in the second game by adding more speed and power. The Thai player started making unforced mistakes and frequently landed his shots outside the scoring lines as a result of Sankar Muthusamy's continuous returns.

The strategy eventually worked as the Indian won the 40-minute match.

On Sunday, Sankar Muthusamy will compete for the title against either Kuo Kuan-lin of Chinese Taipei or Kim Byung-jae of South Korea.

India's tenth medal at the age-group competition was assured by Muthusamy Subramanian on Thursday. India has won one gold, three silver, and five bronze medals in the competition going into the 2022 event, all in singles.

Since Lakshya Sen's bronze medal performance in 2018, Sankar Muthusamy's medal is also India's first at the junior global badminton championships.

Due to COVID-19, the BWF World Junior Championships were postponed in 2020 and 2021. (ANI)