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Saina, Sindhu win; Kashyap loses in Asia Championship

Saina Nehwal and P V Sindhu

Wuhan (China): World No. 1 Saina Nehwal started her campaign with a hard-fought win, while P V Sindhu too continued her rampaging run but it was curtains for top men’s shuttler Parupalli Kashyap at the USD 200,000 Badminton Asia Championship here today.

Olympic bronze-medallist, Saina, who got a bye and a walkover in the first two rounds, was off the blocks with a 21-14 10-21 21-10 win over Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara in a women’s singles match that lasted for an hour and seven minutes. The Indian will next take on fifth seed Tzu Ying Tai of Chinese Taipei.

Eighth seed Sindhu, a two-time bronze winner at the World Championships, set up a clash with top seed Li Xuerui of China in the quarterfinals after brushing aside Macau’s Teng Iok U 21-8 21-9 in another women’s singles match at the Wuhan Sports Center Gymnasium.

However, Commonwealth Games champion Kashyap, who had played a long match yesterday against Chinese Taipei’s Jen Hao Hsu, could not continue his winning run as his gallant fight ended with a 23-21 17-21 8-21 loss to seventh seed Zhengming Wang of China.

Among other Indians, the men’s doubles pair of Manu Attri and Sumeeth Reddy B sank 10-21 13-21 against third seeds Xiaolong Liu and Zihan Qiu of China.

The mixed doubles pair of Arun Vishnu and Aparna Balan also went down 13-21 5-21 to Kai Lu and Yaqiong Huang of China. An All England finalist, Saina fought back from 3-5 and 4-6 in the first and third game to hand Okuhara her third defeat in as many encounters.

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