P.V. Sindhu and Kidambi Srikanth, playing their first quarterfinals of the year, will be cherishing the chance to seal their places in the last four of the Spanish Masters, a Super 300 badminton tournament, in Madrid on Friday.
World no. 11 Sindhu faces Denmark’s world no. 19 Mia Blichfeldt in the quarterfinals. Blichfeldt was the runner-up at the Swiss Open last week when Sindhu lost in the second round to Putri Kusuma Wardani in a three-setter.
Sindhu, facing Putri Kusuma again in the second round, did not give the Indonesian any chance for a turnaround this time. The Indian shuttler beat the youngster in straight games. On Friday, Sindhu, who has a favourable 5-1 head-to-head record against Blichfeldt, will hope to register her third successive win against the Dane.
If Sindhu wins, she might face Yeo Jia Min or Beiwen Zhang in the last four. In the other half of the draw, local heavyweight Carolina Marin, the top seed, plays Japanese Natsuki Nidaira in the quarterfinal.
Meanwhile, Srikanth, who beat compatriot B. Sai Praneeth in straight games, will take on top seed Kenta Nishimoto of Japan.
Even though Srikanth, the world no. 21, holds a 5-2 head-to-head record against Nishimoto, the Indian lost to the Japanese in their last meeting at the Malaysia Open in January.
If he wins, Srikanth will face either Magnus Johannesen or Toma Junior Popov in the semifinals.
Sindhu and Srikanth are the lone Indians who have advanced to the quarterfinals.
The live streaming of the Spanish Masters 2023 is available on Voot Select and BWF TV, the official YouTube channel of the Badminton World Federation. The live telecast of the match will be available on Sports 18.
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