P V Sindhu's quest for her maiden Hong Kong Open Superseries badminton title was dashed as she suffered an 18-21, 18-21 loss to Chinese Taipei's top seed Tai Tzu Ying.
In a rematch of last year's final, Tai topped her Indian opponent 21-18, 21-18 in a match that lasted 45 minutes.
Second seed Sindhu registered a 21-17, 21-17 win in 43 minutes over the Thai sixth seed at the Hong Kong Coliseum. At the 2016 Summer Olympics, she became the first Indian woman to win an Olympic silver medal. Intanon took the first point to put pressure on Indian shuttler, however, Sindhu bounced back as the game was tied 6-6 at one point.
It was the second successive week that Ratchanok bowed out in the semi-finals of a BWF Superseries tournament.
1 defends Hong Kong Open badminton title
The Thai constructed another post with an angled shot to draw Sindhu near the court and then produced a victor on her backhand. But a string of errors and a flawless display by Tai lead to Sindhu losing 5 straight points and the match itself. Deceptive net returns and backhand smashes, coupled with unforced errors from Sindhu, allowed the Taiwanese to lead 18-14.
In the second game, Sindhu fell behind early but fought back to 4-4 and 7-7. But she still has some ways to go before she catches up to Tai Tzu-Ying and seriously challenges her for the World No.1 spot.
The duo moved to 7-7 before Tai Tzu hit wide and lost a referral too. Can Sindhu break the jinx?