Kunlavut Vitidsarn defeated world No.1 Viktor Axelsen for the first time to take the YONEX Sunrise India Open in a repeat of last year’s TotalEnergies World Championship final.
Thailand’s Gainward German Open champion Vitidsarn was beaten 21-5 21-16 by Axelsen last August in a battle for the world title but the 21-year-old, seeded eighth, earned revenge in New Delhi by winning 22-20, 10-21, 21-12 in the showpiece.
Both players had dropped just a single game in their run to the final with Vitidsarn coming through a hard-fought semi-final against world No.3 Anthony Sinisuka Ginting.
The Thai shuttler had to win a 52-point first game against the Indonesian and the opening exchanges with the Dane were equally fraught with tension.
The eighth seed won three consecutive points at 20-19 down to land the first blow and even though Axelsen hit straight back, Vitidsarn wrapped up the win to finally vanquish the 29-year-old at the seventh attempt.