BWF China Open 2019: Saina Nehwal loses in opening clash; Parupalli Kashyap, B Sai Praneeth advance to second round
Olympic bronze-medallist Saina Nehwal crashed out of China Open in Fuzhou on Wednesday following a straight-game opening-round defeat to local favourite Cai Yan Yan.
The World No 9 Saina lost 9-21, 12-21 in the women's singles opening-round clash against Cai Yan Yan that lasted just 24 minutes
Parupalli Kashyap registered a comfortable victory over Thailand's Sitthikom Thammasin, winning 21-14, 21-3 in 43 minutes
World Championships bronze medallist B Sai Praneeth also made it to the second round beating Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia 15-21 21-12 21-10
Fuzhou: There was no end to Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal's lacklustre run of form as the Olympic bronze-medallist crashed out of China Open in Fuzhou on Wednesday following a straight-game opening-round defeat to local favourite Cai Yan Yan.
World No 9 Saina lost 9-21 12-21 in the women's singles clash that lasted just 24 minutes to make an early exit from the $700,000 tournament.
However, in men's singles, Saina's husband and personal coach Parupalli Kashyap registered a comfortable straight-games victory over Thailand's Sitthikom Thammasin.
The Indian outsmarted his Thai opponent 21-14 21-3 in 43 minutes. He will face seventh seed Victor Axelson of Denmark in the second round.
World Championships bronze medallist B Sai Praneeth also made it to the second round beating Tommy Sugiarto of Indonesia 15-21 21-12 21-10 in a 52-minute hard-fought opening round battle. The world No 11 Indian will take on fourth seed Anders Antonsen of Denmark in the next round.
The mixed doubles pairing of Pranav Jerry Chopra and Sikki Reddy also made a first-round exit. The duo went down 14-21 14-21 to Wang Chi-Lin and Cheng Chi Ya of Chinese Taipei.
The 29-year-old Saina has been going through a tough phase with regards to her fitness since claiming the Indonesia Masters in January.
She made three consecutive first-round exits before reaching the quarter-final of the French Open last month.
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Lakshya, who had claimed five titles including two Super 100 tournaments last year, produced a clinical performance to outwit Popov 21-9 21-15 to reach the second round.