All England Open: Saina, Srikanth advance on poor day for Indians

Saina Nehwal, Kidambi Srikanth and B. Sai Praneeth were the only Indians to advance to the second round on day one of the All England Open badminton Championships.

Saina Nehwal advanced to second round of the All England Open Championships. (File Photo)   -  Ritu Raj Konwar

Saina Nehwal, Kidambi Srikanth and B. Sai Praneeth were the only Indians to advance to the second round on day one of the All England Open badminton Championships as P.V. Sindhu, Sameer Verma and H.S. Prannoy crashed out in the first round. None of the doubles pairs could cross the first hurdle either.

As it happened: All England Championships

Saina defeated Scotland's Kirsty Gilmour in straight games 21-17, 21-18 and Srikanth notched a similarly easy victory against Brice Leverdez, beating him 21-13, 21-11. Saina will face Denmark's Line Kjaersfeldt in the second round of the BWF World Tour Super 1000 event while Srikanth lined up a second round match against Indonesian Jonatan Christie.

Sameer Verma lost to sixth seed Viktor Axelsen despite winning the first game 21-16. The match slipped out of the Indian's hands in the second game as the Dane came from behind to take a 14-9 lead and win the second game 21-18. Axelsen breezed through the decider after taking an 8-0 lead and won the match 16-21, 21-8, 21-14.

Earlier, P.V. Sindhu went down in three games to South Korea's Sung Ji-Hyun despite a determined comeback in the second game. The Indian saved three match points at 17-20 in the second to take the match to the decider, during which she saved five match points before suffering her fourth first-round loss at the USD 1 million event.

READ | All England: Sindhu crashes out in first round

In men’s singles, 2017 Singapore Open champion B. Sai Praneeth defeated compatriot HS Prannoy 21-19 21-19 in a pulsating contest.

The women’s doubles pair of Meghana Jakkampudi and Poorvisha S. Ram fought hard before losing 21-18 12-21 12-21 to the Russian combination of Ekaterina Bolotova and Alina Daveltova.

In women's singles, Ashwini Ponnappa and N. Sikki Reddy lost to Japanese pair Shiho Tanaka and Koharu Yonemoto. The Indian pair looked good the in the first game, coming from behind to win it 21-16. A tight second game went in the Japanese duo's favour 28-26. Ashwini and Sikki let slip a three-point advantage at the mid-game interval as Tanaka and Yonemoto took the game 21-16 and dumped the Indians out of the All England Open.

Results

Saina Nehwal bt Kirsty Gilmour 21-17, 21-18

Kidambi Srikanth bt Brice Leverdez 21-13, 21-11

Sameer Verma lost to Viktor Axelsen 16-21, 21-18, 21-14

B. Sai Praneeth beats H.S. Prannoy 21-19, 21-19.

Poorvisha Ram/Meghana Jakkampudi lost to Ekaterina Bolotova/Alina Davletova 18-21, 21-12, 21-12.

Sung Ji-Hyun beats P.V. Sindhu 21-16, 20-22, 21-18.

Shiho Tanaka and Koharu Yonemoto beat Ashwini Ponnappa and N. Sikki Reddy 21-16, 26-28, 16-21.

Xuanyi Ou/Xiangyu Ren bt Manu Attri/Sumeeth Reddy 21-19, 16-21, 21-14