Kidambi Srikanth
Kidambi Srikanth returns a shot during his men's singles final against China's Lin Dan at Badminton China Open in Fuzhou, Fujian province.Reuters file

Saina Nehwal labelled her triumph at the China Open Super Series Premier on Sunday as one of the toughest wins in her career.

The world no.5 had to dig deep in the second game to see off the challenge from Akane Yamaguchi of Japan 21-12, 22-20, to take home the women's singles title.

Saina expressed her delight after the win and stressed that it is proof that the hard work she has done over the last few months paid off.

"I m very happy to win this title, my third in the season. It is one of the toughest. I have been working really hard for the last few months and I am extremely happy that my efforts bore fruit," The Times of India quoted the Olympic bronze-medallist.

"It has not been easy for me. Vimal (Kumar) sir helped me a lot and it is a huge victory and a great feeling to win the title in China."

Meanwhile, Kidambi Srikanth stole the spotlight with his shocking yet convincing straight-game victory over China's five-time world champion Lin Dan 21-19, 21-17, to win his maiden Super Series title.

The 21-year-old's win marks the first time an Indian male shuttler is winning a Super Series Premier event, since the Super Series and Premier tournaments' inception. Saina heaped praise on Srikanth for his epic victory over two-time Olympic champion Lin.

"I am extremely happy for Srikanth. His victory was amazing. It turned out to be a historic moment for Indian badminton," the 24-year-old pointed out.

National coach Pullela Gopichand also hailed his two protégés, branding the day as a landmark one for Indian badminton.

"Winning the men's and women's singles game of China Open in China is amazing. It is a brilliant effort for any nation and as an Indian I think it is a very proud moment for all of us," Goipchand stated.

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