Badminton: PV Sindhu breaks into the top 20

New Delhi: Rising Indian shuttler PV Sindhu on Thursday broke into the world top 20 in the latest badminton ranking following her "giant killing" exploits at last week's China Masters tournament.

The 17-year-old Indian, who stunned the world after beating London Olympics gold medallist Li Xuerui in the quarterfinals of the China Masters, surged four places to achieve the 20th place in the BWF ranking announced on Thursday.

However, for Sindhu, the good news came on a day when she lost her pre-quarterfinal match to fourth seed Yeon Ju Bae of Korea 21-10, 12-21, 18-21 in Japan Open in Tokyo.

PV Sindhu has made it to the top 20 for the first time. AFP

PV Sindhu has made it to the top 20 for the first time. AFP

London Olympics bronze medallist and India's top shuttler Saina Nehwal retained her fourth place in the ranking list. The 22-year-old from Hyderabad is currently taking rest and did not play in the China Masters and Japan Open.

In men's singles, Olympic quarterfinalist Parupalli Kashyap slipped one rung down to be placed at the 20th spot, while Ajay Jayaram jumped six places to 23rd place, following his semifinal finish at China Masters.

Senior National champion Sourabh Verma also zoomed eight places to rise to 31st spot, while RMV Gurusaidutt was placed 46th after improving nine places.

In women's doubles, Ashwini Ponnappa and Jwala Gutta, who has decided to take a six months sabbatical from badminton, remained steady at 22nd spot on women's doubles, while Jwala and V Diju, who tied his nuptial knot with Dr Soumya on September 17, dropped two places to 14th place in mixed doubles.

Ashwini, who is now concentrating on her mixed doubles career, moved to the 56th spot along with her partner Tarun Kona, jumping 22 places.

PTI