Indian shuttlers eye ranking points at Asia Championship

Indian shuttlers, including Saina Nehwal and P. V. Sindhu, will look to earn some valuable ranking points when they start their campaign in the Badminton Asia Championship, the last event before the Olympic qualification deadline, starting here on Wednesday.

After recovering from a nagging ankle injury, Saina registered semifinal finishes in the Swiss Open, India Open and Malaysia Open before skipping the Singapore Open, and the fifth seeded Indian will now open her campaign here against Fitriani Fitriani of Indonesia on Wednesday.   -  AP

Indian shuttlers, including Saina Nehwal and P. V. Sindhu, will look to earn some valuable ranking points when they start their campaign in the Badminton Asia Championship, the last event before the Olympic qualification deadline, starting here on Wednesday.

After recovering from a nagging ankle injury, Saina registered semifinal finishes in the Swiss Open, India Open and Malaysia Open before skipping the Singapore Open, and the fifth seeded Indian will now open her campaign here against Fitriani Fitriani of Indonesia on Wednesday.

World No. 10 Sindhu, however, made a lot of quarterfinal exits this year and would be eager to break that jinx when she starts her campaign against Maria Febe Kusumastuti of Indonesia.

In the men’s singles, World No. 13 Kidambi Srikanth, who is set to play his first Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro in August, has been going through an inexplicable slump in form.

The 23-year-old from Guntur lost in opening rounds at the India Open, Malaysia Open, Singapore Open and China Masters, and the eighth-seeded Indian will look to end the dismal run when he clash with Korea’s Lee Dong Keun in the opening round.

More actions are in store at the Wuhan Sports Center Gymnasium as 2010 Commonwealth Games champion pair Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa will face Korean pair of Chang Ye Na and Lee So Hee.

World No. 20 men’s doubles pair of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy will meet Japan’s Hiroyuki Endo and Kenichi Hayakawa, while Pranaav Jerry Chopra and Akshay Dewalkar will square off against Hong Kong combo of Or Chin Chung and Tang Chun Man.

A country can enter a maximum of two players each in the men’s and women’s singles, if both are ranked in the world’s top 16, otherwise, one quota place until the roster of thirty-eight players has been completed. These regulations also apply to the players competing in the doubles.

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