Korea Open 2018: Saina Nehwal beats South Korea's Kim Ga Eun to book quarters clash with Nozomi Okuhara
Saina Nehwal, who had won a bronze at the Asian Games and gold at Commonwealth Games this year, defeated Kim Ga Eun 21-18 21-18 in a 37-minute women's singles pre-quarterfinal.
Seoul: India ace Saina Nehwal progressed to the quarterfinals of the USD 600,000 Korea Open after seeing off Korea's Kim Ga Eun at the BWF World Tour Super 500 tournament here Thursday.
Former world number one, who had won a bronze at the Asian Games and gold at Commonwealth Games this year, defeated Kim Ga Eun 21-18 21-18 in a 37-minute women's singles pre-quarterfinal.
Fifth seed Saina will cross swords with 2017 world champion and third seed Japanese Nozomi Okuhara.
Saina has a 6-3 head-to-head count against the Okuhara but she has lost to the Japanese in the last two meetings.
The Indian made a rampaging start, jumping to a 10-2 lead but Kim narrowed the gap to 8-11 at the break.
After the breather, Saina continued to move ahead, grabbing a 16-10 lead but the Korean reeled off six straight points to draw level at 18-18. However, Saina ensured there were no hiccups, grabbing the required three points to pocket the opening game.
Kim came back strongly in the second game, surging to an 8-1 advantage but the experienced Saina slowly clawed her way back to 10-13 and then claimed seven points on the trot to turn the tables on the Korean, reaching 17-13.
From there on, Saina sealed the contest, despite Kim's attempts to fightback.
Saina had reached the final of Indonesia Masters in January and the only tournament she won was the Commonwealth Games in April, beating compatriot PV Sindhu in the final at Gold Coast.
Kim also handed promotions to more than 100 officials and scientists for their work on the Hwasong-17 just days after Pyongyang test-fired it in one of its most powerful launches yet
The daughter, believed to be Kim's second child named Ju Ae and about 9 or 10 years old, was first unveiled to the outside world last weekend in state media photos
The message from Xi came days after North Korea fired an intercontinental ballistic missile in one of its most powerful tests yet, declaring it would meet perceived US nuclear threats with nukes of its own