Saina ousted from French Open; Sindhu advances

India's Saina Nehwal's French Open title dream crashed after she lost to Japan's A. Yamaguchi 9-21, 21-23 while Sindhu beat Sayaka Takahasi to enter the quarters.

A file photo of P.V. Sindhu exulting after a win.   -  AFP

Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal  was halted by Japan's Akane Yamaguchi for the second successive week as the Indian suffered a 9-21, 21-23 loss in the second round of the French Open World Superseries here on Thursday.

The Japanese fifth seed took just 39 minutes to send Saina packing.

Later, P. V. Sindhu breezed past Japan's Sayaka Takahasi 21-14, 21-13. The last time the duo met, it was Takahashi who got the better of the Indian in the Korea Open in 2015, but the Indian was a far more destructive and improved player since then.

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Sindhu will now meet Yufei Chen in the next round. Sindhu lost to Chen in the first round in the recently concluded Denmark Open and would be raring to avenge her defeat.

Earlier, it was 20-year-old Yamaguchi’s third consecutive win over 27-year-old Saina, who still leads the Indian 3-1 in head-to-head records.

Yamaguchi completely dominated Saina in the first match after opening up a 13-7 lead before winning it 21-9.

Saina fought valiantly in the second game. Though Yamaguchi started strong, holding a 7-3 lead, Saina managed to equalise at the 19-point mark before taking a 20-19 lead. After exchanging points, Yamaguchi stepped up her game to seal it 23-21.