All England: Sindhu advances after beating Zhang, Srikanth falters

P.V. Sindhu secured a straight games win over Beiwin Zhang to progress at the All England Open, while Kidambi Srikanth lost to Chen Long in his opener.

PV Sindhu

PV Sindhu will next face Korean Sung Ji Hyun for a place in the All England Open quarterfinals.   -  AFP

Indian badminton star P.V. Sindhu made a confident start at the All England Open, beating American Beiwen Zhang in straight games, but Kidambi Srikanth bowed out with a first round defeat to reigning Olympic champion Chen Long in Birmingham on Wednesday.

The sixth seed Sindhu got the better of the American, ranked eight places below her, 21-14 21-17 in 42 minutes.

The second game was a close affair with the two players locked at 17-all. Sindhu, however, won four points in a row to clinch the issue.

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It was the 10th meeting between the two players with Sindhu improving the overall head-to-head record to 6-4. The last time they met was at the Korea Open where the American won in three sets.

However, in the men’s singles, Srikanth lost in straight games to the Chinese world number five. The Indian lost 15-21 16-21 in 43 minutes.

Sindhu will next clash with Korean Sung Ji Hyun for a place in the quarterfinals. Saina Nehwal and P Kashyap are also scheduled to play later on Wednesday along with Lakshya Sen and B Sai Praneeth.

Saina is up against third seed Akane Yamaguchi of Japan. In the women’s doubles, Ashwini Ponnappa and Sikki Reddy will open their campaign against the British pair of Jenny Moore and Victoria Williams.

Meanwhile, the mixed doubles pair of Pranaav Jerry Chopra and N Sikki Reddy lost 13-21, 21-11, 17-21 to China's top-seed pair of Si Wei Zheng and Ya Qiong Huang.

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