New Delhi: Indian badminton juggernaut continued to roll at the 2017 BWF World Championship with Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu, Kidambi Srikanth and B Sai Praneeth booking their respective pre-quarterfinal spots in singles events.
But Sameer Verma and Rituparna Das suffered contrasting defeats on Day 3.
On Day 4, there will be as many as seven Indians in action, including a mixed-doubles team. Here’s look at Indians on action today:
1. Saina Nehwal
The Indian ace will take on second-seeded South Korean Sung Ji Hyun in a pre-quarterfinal match. It will be a tough ask for Nehwal to counter the speed and agility of the upcoming Korean star. But the 12th seeded Indian will hope to utilise her experience and past record to her advantage. Nehwal has a 7-2 record against her rival. In the latest match-up, Nehwal won in straight games 21-10 21-16 at Australian Open earlier this year.
2. PV Sindhu
In another women’s singles pre-quarterfinal match, fourth seeded PV Sindhu will take on Cheung Ngan Yi of Hong Kong. Indian shuttler will enter the match with confidence, considering her 3-0 head-to-head record against the world number 17. In their last meeting, Sidhu beat Ngan Yin straight games, 21-14 21-16 at 2016 Hong Kong Open.
3. Ajay Jayaram
Three Indians will feature in the men’s singles pre-quarterfinal round today. And Ajay Jayaram has got probably the toughest of those draws as he takes on Chinese superstar Chen Long. Indian shuttler is seeded 13th, and it will take a giant killing act from the 29-year-old to beat the former world number one. Jayaram lost all their previous five matches in straight games, latest being a 15-21 14-21 drubbing at 2016 China Open.
4. Kidambi Srikanth
All eyes will be on the 26-year-old player from Guntur. Seeded eighth, he will take on Anders Antonsen of Denmark. The Dane is seeded 14th, and realistically poses no threat to the top Indian player. This will be their first meeting, and the onus will be on Srikanth to keep Indian flag in men’s section flying, especially considering other two Indians in the fray are taking on higher ranked opponents.
5. B. Sai Praneeth
The 25-year-old from Hyderabad will lock horns with sixth seeded Chou Tien Chen of Chinese Taipei. Rankings and their past records heavily favoured the Chinese Taipei player, but with the Indian shuttler, on the back of his recent form, can hope for a good win today.
6. Pranaav Jerry Chopra and N. Sikki Reddy
Chopra and Reddy, seeded 15th, are the only Indians left in the mixed-doubles after yesterday’s defeats of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Maneesha K. They will take on seventh seeded Indonesian pair of Debby Susanto and Praveen Jordan. This will be their first meeting.