Sindhu, Jayaram reach quarterfinals of China Open

Seventh seeded Sindhu survived a scare from Beiwen Zhang before notching up a 18-21, 22-20, 21-17 victory in a women’s singles match that lasted an hour here. Jayaram too had to work hard to surpass Wei Nan as he notched up a 20-22, 21-19, 21-12 win .

P.V. Sindhu badminton China Open ( File picture)

P.V. Sindhu rallied to beat Beiwan Zhang and enter the quarterfinals of China Open on Thursday.   -  K.V.S. Giri

Olympic silver medallist P. V. Sindhu and male singles shuttler Ajay Jayaram advanced to the quarterfinals after registering thrilling three-game wins over their respective opponents in the second round of the USD 700,000 China Super Series Premier, here today.

Seventh seeded Sindhu survived a scare from Beiwen Zhang before notching up a 18-21, 22-20, 21-17 victory in a women’s singles match that lasted an hour here. The Indian will next take on China’s He Bingjiao, against whom she had lost in the second round of the French Open last month.

Sindhu blew away a 11-7 lead at the break to allow Zhang comeback and level the scores at 13-13. The American soon moved to a 15-13 and 18-15 lead before reeling off the last three points in to pocket the first game.

In the second game, Sindhu once again zoomed to a 8-0 lead but once again she squandered the advantage as Zhang clawed back to first level the scores at 16-16. She soon led 19-17 but the Indian ensured there was no hiccup this time as she roared back into the contest.

In the decider, Sindhu held a slender 8-6 lead and then broke off at 9-9 to never look back.

Jayaram too had to work hard to surpass Wei Nan as he notched up a 20-22, 21-19, 21-12 win over the Hong Kong shuttler in a 56-minute clash.

In the second game, Jayaram erased a 2-6 deficit to drew parity at 9-9. He moved ahead at 14-11 and despite a challenge from Wei, managed to bounce back into the contest after five straight points.

In the decider, Jayaram managed to keep himself at a distance from Wei after opening up a small 7-3 lead. He kept increasing the lead and eventually sealed the issue comfortably.

It was a tough battle for supremacy as Jayaram’s gallant fight in the opening game ended with a narrow loss after he and Wei moved neck and neck from 11-11 to 20-20.

The three-time Dutch Open Champion, Jayaram, will face reigning Olympic Champion and two-time World Champion and All England Champion Chen Long of China in the next round.

However, it was curtains for Swiss Open winner H. S. Prannoy after he suffered a 17-21, 19-21 loss to Qiao Bin of China in another men’s singles match.

Rio Olympic Games women's gold medalist, Carolina Marin, defeated Sayaka Sato in straight games — 21-13, 21-12 —in her pre-quarterfinal game. Marin will face Tzu Ying Tai of Taiwan, who defeated Minatsu Mitani of Japan 21-15, 21-19.

Viktor Axelsen, bronze medalist in Rio Olympic Games, also progressed to the quaterfinals after defeating Yun Hu of Hong Kong 21-15, 21-18. He will play against Takuma Ueda of Japan, who defeated Marc Zwiebler of Germany 21-17, 21-18. On Wednesday, Zwiebler had ousted B. Sai Praneeth in the opening round 16-21, 9-21.