Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal booked her place in the final of the Denmark Super Series Premier tournament after her opponent — World No. 1 Yihan Wang of China — retired midway through the semifinal clash because of a knee injury.
Wang, the London Olympics silver medallist, looked in great physical distress and finally decided to throw in the towel after lagging 7-12 in the second game. Saina had won the first game comfortably at 21-12.
Saina, bronze medallist at the London Games, will take on sixth seed German Juliane Schenk, who beat eighth seed Yanjiao Jiang 13-21, 21-14, 21-15 in the other women’s singles semifinal.
This is Saina’s first victory over Wang. The 22-year-old Indian was down 0-5 in the first game but recovered brilliantly, pocketing six points on the trot. She then went into the break at 11-6.
After the break, Saina continued her fine run and held on to her lead and finally nosed ahead with four straight points.
In the second game, Saina once again opened up a healthy 9-2 lead. Saina went into the breather at 11-6 with a body-line shot. Wang clearly looked in difficulty because of the injury and after a consultation with the tournament doctor decided to quit.
On Friday night, Saina had eased past local hope Tine Baun 21-10, 21-11 to reach the semifinals.