Ajay Jayaram finishes runner-up at Vietnam Open
Indian shuttler Ajay Jayaram suffered a 14-21, 10-21 final defeat against Shesar Hiren Rhustavito of Indonesia to finish as runner-up at the USD 75,000 Vietnam Open on Sunday.
The 30-year-old Indian who had defeated the seventh-seeded Japanese Yu Igarashi in the semis was making his second final appearance in two months. He, however, lasted just 28 minutes against the 79th ranked Indonesian to settle for a runner-up medal at the BWF Tour Super 100 Tournament.
It was the second consecutive runner-up finish for Jayaram after reaching the final of the White Nights International Challenge in July.
Shesar, who has the record of winning four consecutive Indonesia Open had earlier beaten Mithun Manjunath 21-17, 19-21, 21-14 in the semis to reach the final.
Meanwhile, Ajay who just last month made a comeback from a year-long hamstring injury, got the better of the Japanese 21-14, 21-19 in 34 minutes to reach the finals on Saturday.
Against Igarashi, the former World No. 13, took a slender 3-1 lead at the start and then opened up a three-point advantage at the interval, with the game at 11-8.
He was at his imperative best on return and clinched five straight points to move to a 15-8 lead and although Igarashi tried to claw his way back, the deficit was too big for him to stop Jayaram. The Japanese eventually failed as the Indian comfortably won 21-14.
In contrast, it was Igarashi who began well in the second game taking 4-1 lead initially but Jayaram fought his way back with three consecutive points to level terms. Having found some much-needed form the Japanese went toe-on-toe with Jayaram, who had a slender 11-10 lead at the break.
But the Indian was at his lethal best once again after the break, taking five points while Igarashi managed just one at 16-11. He recovered well at 18-19 but just when the game looked set to go into a tie-breaker, Jayaram shut the door on his opponent and sealed his final appearance in over a year.
Interestingly, it was also for the third straight week that an Indian shuttler played in a Badminton tournament final. But only Sourabh Verma could clinch a victory in the final of the Russia Open, while PV Sindhu came runner-up at the World Championship.