Saina Nehwal reaches Korea Open quarters

Saina Nehwal registers a 21-18, 21-18 win over Korea's Kim Ga-eun to progress to the quarterfinals of Korea Open.

Saina Nehwal is now the lone Indian player at the USD 600,000 Korea Open.   -  AFP

Hello and welcome to Sportstar's LIVE updates of the Women's Singles pre-quarterfinal match between World No.10 India's Saina Nehwal and World No. 78 South Korea's Kim Ga-eun. She is the only Indian remaining in the competition after Sameer Verma, Vaishnavi Reddy lost their first main draw matches on Wednesday.

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SAINA NEHWAL VS KIM GA-EUN

1:20pm: Saina Nehwal wins 21-18, 21-18 to reach the quarterfinals.  Kim didn't give up easily. She made Saina fight for every point in the second game, but Saina manages to hold on to a 21-18 win the second game to set up a potential quarterfinal match with Sindhu's nemesis Nozomi Okuhara.

1:17pm: What a comeback. Saina now leads 16-13 in the second game and quite close to sealing a quarterfinal berth.

1:13pm: Saina's experience comes to the fore. From 1-8, Saina has managed to make it 10-12. She might win the match in straight games after all, but there is work to be done.

1:11pm: It's 11-6 in favour of the Korean World No. 78. Saina is still in with a chance to make a comeback.

1:08pm: Saina has slumped to 1-8 in the second game. It will be difficult for the Indian to bridge the deficit, but she has the calibre to do it.

1:03pm: Saina Nehwal recovers from a mid-game lull to win the first game 21-18.

1:00pm: Saina has allowed her opponent to come back and level the scores at 16-16. Sindhu and Saina have been falling to lesser-known opponents in an uncharacteristic fashion since the World Championships. Sindhu opted out of Korean Open after falling early in Japan. Saina had taken a break to recover from fatigue and didn't participate in the Japan Open. 

12:56pm: Saina is still maintaining a comfortable 5-point lead at 15-10 in the first game. Against the inexperienced Korean, it is Saina's match to lose. After growing accustomed to Indians winning or reaching the final stages of premier tournament, we have been witnessing a lull off late.

12:54pm: This is the first time the two shuttlers are competing against each other with Saina Nehwal going in as the clear favourite to make it to the quarterfinals. After cruising to a 10-2 lead, the Indian gives room for the Korean to make a small comeback with four consecutive points. 

12:49pm: Saina Nehal begins strongly. She has jumped to a 7-2 lead in short time against the lower-ranked Korean Kim Ga-eun. It is a BWF World Tour Super 500 event and we have just one Indian in action on the second day of the main draw!.