Yamaguchi too hot to handle for Sindhu

Singapore, June 6

India’s Kidambi Srikanth made a winning start but PV Sindhu and HS Prannoy were ousted from the Singapore Open Super 750 after suffering contrasting losses in the opening round here today.

Srikanth, a 2021 World Championships silver medallist, beat Thailand’s Kantaphon Wangcharoen 21-15 21-19 in the opening round of the men’s singles. He will face Chinese Taipei’s Chia Hao Lee, who beat Japan’s Kenta Nishimoto in his opening match.

Priyanshu Rajawat notched up a 21-12 21-15 win over Japan’s Kanta Tsuneyama to make it to the second round. The 21-year-old from Madhya Pradesh will face Japan’s world No. 4 Kodai Naraoka, who beat an in-form Prannoy 15-21 19-21 in 56 minutes.

Up against world No. 1 Akane Yamaguchi of Japan, defending champion Sindhu fought hard before going down 21-18 19-21 17-21 in a little over an hour. The two last faced off in Thailand last year. Sindhu is slowly getting back to her best after recovering from an ankle injury suffered in August last year. She had a final and semifinal finishes at the Spain Masters and Malaysia Masters, respectively, but this was her second successive first-round exit after last week’s early loss at the Thailand Open.

Saina Nehwal lost 13-21 15-21 to former world champion Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, while Aakarshi Kashyap went down 21-17 21-9 to Supanida Katethong in their respective opening matches.

Doubles pair of MR Arjun and Dhruv Kapila, however, made a good start after claiming a 21-16 21-15 win over France’s Lucas Corvee and Ronan Labar in their opening match.

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