Saina, Sindhu enter quarterfinals of Malaysia Open

After Sindhu edged Korea’s Sung Ji Hyun, seeded seventh, 22-20 21-17 in a 47-minute clash, Saina brushed aside another Korean Bae Yeon Ju 21-10 21-16 in a match that lasted a little over half an hour.

Saina brushed aside Korean Bae Yeon Ju 21-10 21-16 in a match that lasted a little over half an hour.   -  Getty Images

Indian shuttlers Saina Nehwal and P. V. Sindhu continued their winning run at the Malaysia Open in contrasting ways to reach the quarterfinals of the women’s singles competition here today.

After Sindhu edged Korea’s Sung Ji Hyun, seeded seventh, 22-20 21-17 in a 47-minute clash, Saina brushed aside another Korean Bae Yeon Ju 21-10 21-16 in a match that lasted a little over half an hour.

The two-time bronze medallist at World Championship, Sindhu had lost to Sung Ji at Hyderabad during the Asian badminton Championship team event. The 20-year-old from Hyderabad will next meet former world champion and two-time India Open winner Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, while Saina meets Thailand’s Porntip Buranaprasertsuk, who stunned All England champion Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara, seeded 8th, 21-12 22-20.

Saina, seeded third, was authoritative on the second round clash against Bae as she led 11-3 lead at the interval in both the games and didn’t give much chance to her opponent to make a comeback. Saina has now beaten the Korean nine times in 13 meetings.

Sindhu almost blew away a 9-6 and 20-18 lead in the opening game before managing to surpass Sung Ji and earn the bragging rights.

In the second game, she fought back from 6-8 down to finally break off at 15-15 with five straight points, reaching 20-15. The Korean saved two match points before Sindhu sealed the match.

Chinese Taipei’s Tai Tzu Ying stunned Olympic champion Li Xuerui of China, seeded second, 14-21 21-18 21-1 in another second round match. Interestingly, Li had reached the finals at India Open last week.

Among others, World No. 1 Carolina Marin, Chinese duo of Wang Shixian and Wang Yihan also reached the last eight.