Last year's India Open final turned out to be a blockbuster contest. At New Delhi's Siri Fort Indoor Stadium, which was packed to the rafters, PV Sindhu avenged her Olympic final defeat at the hands of Carolina Marin. The local favourite blew away the Spaniard in straight games on April 2.
Cut to February 2018, and Sindhu is a win away from successfully defending her title and becoming only the second women's singles shuttler after Saina Nehwal to win two India Open crowns.
The 22-year-old had beaten the likes of Saina, Sung Ji Hyun and Marin en route to the top step of the podium last year. However, she has had an easier passage to the final in this year's tournament, from which top-ranked Tai Tzu Ying and Akane Yamaguchi withdrew.
Sindhu made light work of one of her tough rivals Ratchanok Intanon in the semi-final on Saturday. The world number four needed only 48 minutes to outclass her higher-ranked opponent 21-13, 21-15, much to the surprise of quite a few, who expected a hard-fought contest.
Sindhu will face world number 11 Beiwen Zhang of the US on Sunday. She is the favourite to win the title, given her 2-1 head-to-head record over the 27-year-old opponent and the home support she is expected to enjoy.
However, Zhang will draw confidence from her win over Sindhu in their latest meetings at the Indonesia Open 2017. The US shuttler has defeated the likes of Saina and Cheung Ngan Yi en route to the final, but she needs to be at her best to test her in-form opponent in the big final.
When does the finals start and how to watch it live
The women's singles final between Sindhu and Zhang will not start before 6 pm IST, 12:30 pm GMT.
Live streaming and TV coverage
India: TV: Star Sports Select 2/HD; Live streaming: Hotstar
Worldwide live stream: BWF YouTube channel
Malaysia: TV: Astro Arena: Live streaming: Astro Go
China: TV: CCTV 5+
Other matches to watch out for
- Women's doubles final - 2 pm IST: Greysia Polii/Apriyani Rahayu (IDN) vs Jongkolphan Kititharakul/Rawinda Prajongjai (THA)
- Mixed doubles final - Not before 3 pm IST: Mathias Boe/Christinna Pedersen (DEN) vs Praveen Jordan/Melati Oktavianti (IDN)
- Men's singles final - Not before 4 pm IST: Chou Tien Chen (TPE) vs Shi Yuqi (CHN)
- Men's doubles final - Not before 5 pm IST
- Marcus Fernaldi/Kevin Sanjaya [IDN] vs Kim Astrup/Anders Skaarup [DEN]