All England Championship: Saina Nehwal enters quarterfinals

Ace Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal progressed to the quarterfinals of the All England Championships with a come-from-behind win over Denmark’s Line Højmark Kjaersfeldt in the women’s singles competition here Thursday.

A 2015 finalist, Saina was blown away by world no 19 Line in the opening game but the experienced campaigner kept her cool to take the match to the decider and eventually come up trumps against her Danish rival.

The eighth seeded Indian rallied her way to a 8-21 21-16 21-13 win over the 24-year-old Line in a 51-minute match and is expected to take on her nemesis and two-time champion Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei, an opponent who defeated her in last 12 outings.

Earlier, Saina had defeated Scotland’s Kristy Gilmour 21-17 21-18 in 35 minutes in her opening match on Wednesday night.

In men’s singles, former Singapore Open champion B Sai Praneeth’s fight lasted just 35 minutes as he went down 12-21 17-21 to 24-year-old Ng Ka Long Angus, who had denied Sameer Verma a title win at the 2016 Hong Kong Super Series. It was his third loss to the World no 15 from Hong Kong.

On Wednesday, Srikanth had disposed off France’s Brice Leverdez 21-13 21-11 in the opening round to set up a clash against Asian Games gold medallist Jonatan Christie.

Sameer Verma, however, squandered a first game advantage to go down fighting 21-16 18-21 14-21 to former world champion and world no 1 Viktor Axelsen of Denmark to bow out of the tournament.

The women’s doubles pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy fought a gruelling battle before losing 21-16 26-28 16-21 to seventh seeded Japanese pair of Shiho Tanaka and Koharu Yonemoto.

Sikki and Pranaav Jerry Chopra, who is coming back from an injury, lost 21-23 17-21 to Hong King’s Chang Tak Ching and NG Wing Yung in the mixed doubles.

The men’s doubles pair of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy also lost 19-21 21-16 14-21 to the Chinese combination of Ou Xuanyi and Ren Xiangyu.

First Published:
Mar 07, 2019 21:30 IST

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