Awadhe Warriors’ shuttler Sania Nehwal was ruled out of the third Premier Badminton League (PBL) opener against Chennai Smashers here on Saturday due to an ankle niggle.

According to a statement, Saina had “not fully recovered” from the ankle niggle.

Read - Sindhu: 'We cannot blame the BWF for a tight schedule'

Saina’s absence disappointed the spectators who had expected the seasoned shuttler’s much-anticipated clash with Chennai Smashers’ P. V. Sindhu in the inaugural match.

‘Recovering well’

Awadhe coach Anup Sridhar, however, was hopeful that Saina would play in the tie against North Eastern Warriors in New Delhi on December 30. “Saina is recovering from a small ankle issue which she had developed a few weeks back. She is recovering well and we are expecting her to be fully fit for the next match,” said Anup.