PV Sindhu, Lakshya Sen Bow Out; Kidambi Srikanth In Quarterfinals Of Swiss Open

Two-time Olympic medallist PV Sindhu’s run at the Swiss Open was cut short by a Japanese teenager, while top Indian male shuttler Lakshya Sen lost to Lee Chia-Hao of Chinese-Taipei in the pre-quarterfinals of the Super 300 tournament here. Ace Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth, Priyansh Rajawat and Kiran George won their respective men’s singles round-of 16 matches to advance to the quarterfinals late on Thursday night.

Sindhu, after bowing out in the second round of the recently-concluded All England Championships, lost to Japan’s 17-year-old junior world champion Tomoka Miyazaki 21-16 19-21 16-21, while Sen was eliminated by Lee Chia-hao 17-21 15-21 in just 38 minutes in the round-of 16 contest.

Srikanth, though, secured a place in the quarterfinals by defeating top seed Lee Zii Jia of Malaysia 21-61 21-15, while Rajawat got the better of Lei La Xi of China 21-14 21-13 to clinch a last-eight berth.

George struggled against French shuttler Alex Lanier before prevailing 18-21 22-20 21-18 in gruelling 71-minute contest to book a quarterfinal berth.

Srikanth will take on Lee Chia-Hao, while Rajawat will clash against Chinese-Taipei’s Chou Tien-Chen in the last-eight round. George will look to get past Rasmus Gemke of Denmark to secure a place in the semifinals.

Sindhu, who seems to be returning to form after a long injury layoff, fought her teenaged rival tooth and nail before bowing out in round of 16 with the Japanese shuttler drawing on her youthful energy to make a statement against the two-time Olympic medallist.

Miyazaki, who had claimed the gold medal at the 2022 world junior championships, and has come into the tournament after winning her maiden Super 300 crown at Orleans Masters in France last week, lost the first game 16-21 but staged a fine recovery to take the tie into the decider before winning in 80 minutes.

Miyazaki kept hitting those high tosses to keep Sindhu at the back. The Indian had to play a lot of over-the-head returns and ended up making errors as the rallies extended.

In the end, the Japanese had six match points. Sindhu saved two before spraying into the net.

Earlier on Thursday, the Indian women’s doubles pair of Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand progressed to the quarterfinals with a straight-game win over compatriots Priya Konjengbam and Shruti Mishra.

The eighth seeded Commonwealth Games bronze medallists hardly broke a sweat as they brushed aside fellow Indians Priya and Shruti, ranked 75th in the world, 21-10 21-12 in 36 minutes.

World no. 26 Treesa and Gayatri, who are sharing the 14th place in the Olympic Games qualification ranking, will face Australia’s Setyana Mapasa and Angela Yu in the next round.

World No. 20 Tanisha Crasto and Ashwini Ponnappa, who are 6,296 points ahead of Treesa and Gayatri in the Paris qualification race at 12th spot, lost 17-21 16-21 to Japan’s world No. 30 Rui Hirokami and Yuna Kato.

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