In a riveting all-Indian semifinal, the 12th seed got the better of the 20-year-old Lakshya Sen 17-21, 21-14, 21-17 in 69 minutes to etch his name in the annals of India's sporting history.
India has four men's singles medals from the BWF World Championships. While Prakash Padukone (1983) and Sai Praneeth (2019) each have a bronze, this is the first time an Indian shuttler will be fighting for the trophy in this discipline.
On Sunday, Srikanth will face the winner of the second semifinal between third seed Anders Antonsen and World No. 22 Loh Kean Yew.
Srikanth began the highly-anticipated all-Indian match on the backfoot. Looking nervous for nearly one-and-a-half games, the former World No. 1 trailed Sen 17-21, 4-8.
The Guntur-born ace finally rediscovered his rhythm midway through the second game to inch ahead to 11-9 at half-time. Having freed up, the 28-year-old found his shots to clinch the second game 21-14 and set up a decider.
The third game was once again tightly-contested as the former Asian junior champion Sen kept putting pressure on his older compatriot in the initial stages. Sen held a brief lead of 11-8 but Srikanth was always close on his heels.
Riding on his brilliant attacking game and fabulous anticipation skills, the Pullela Gopichand protégé gradually started clawing his way back. Both players looked visibly tired towards the end of the engaging decider, yet pushed on.
Srikanth went ahead for the first time at 16-15 as his experience of playing on the biggest stages showed. Sen kept fighting but couldn't prevent the march of the World No. 14 into the final.
Twitter lauds both Kidambi Srikanth and Lakshya Sen after a memorable match
Kidambi Srikanth and Lakshya Sen's mesmerizing match had the entire social media gushing over the two. The warm embrace the two shared at the end of the enthralling duel also had Twitterati talking.
Here are some of the best tweets: