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New Zealand Open 2019: HS Prannoy loses to Kanta Tsuneyama in hard-fought quarter-final clash as Indian campaign ends

Auckland: HS Prannoy fought valiantly before losing to fifth seed Kanta Tsuneyama of Japan in the men's singles quarter-final, drawing curtains on India's campaign at the New Zealand Open badminton tournament on Friday.

Unseeded Prannoy squandered a one-game advantage before losing 21-17 15-21 14-21 to World No 11 Japanese shuttler in a marathon last-eight round match which lasted an hour and 13 minutes.

 New Zealand Open 2019: HS Prannoy loses to Kanta Tsuneyama in hard-fought quarter-final clash as Indian campaign ends

File image of HS Prannoy. AFP

The two shuttlers now enjoy a 1-1 head-to-head record against each other.

The first game witnessed a close fight between Prannoy and Tsuneyama as both matched each other stroke for stroke till the first 13 points before the Indian pocketed four straight points to surge ahead 17-13.

The Japanese didn't give up and reduced the gap to 17-18 before Prannoy secured three points on the trot to take the first game.

Prannoy raced to a 4-0 lead in the second game soon before extending it to 11-5.

But then the Indian hit a roadblock and committed unforced errors to give his opponent a leeway and the Tsuneyama grabbed the chance with both hands. He won eight straight points to move ahead 14-11.

The Indian managed to draw level at 14 apiece before Tsuneyama closed out the game at 21-15 in his favour.

The decider too was a hard-fought one as both the shuttlers were not in a mood to concede an each. They were tied at 14-14 before the Japanese lifted his game to seal the tie.

Tsuneyama will play third seed and Jakarta Asian Games gold medallist Jonathan Christie in the last-four round.

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Updated Date: May 03, 2019 19:19:09 IST