All England Open: PV Sindhu crashes out; Srikanth advances into pre-quarters

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BIRMINGHAM (UK): Former world champion PV Sindhu’s poor form continued as she lost to Zhang Yi Man of China in the opening round of the All England Open 2023 women’s singles at the Utilita Arena in Birmingham on Wednesday.

PV Sindhu, world No. 9 in badminton rankings, lost to the world No.17 Chinese shuttler 21-17, 21-11 for her third first-round exit of the year. The two-time Olympic medallist also crashed out early from the Malaysia Open and India Open earlier in January.

Playing against the drift, Sindhu began the match with a measured approach and led by three points at 16-13. Zhang Yi Man, a bronze medalist at the World Championships, used a series of powerful cross-court smashes to claw her way back into the match and take a 1-0 lead.

The Indian badminton player struggled to lift her game after the change of ends after parting ways with her long-time coach Park Tae-Sang last month. Zhang Yi Man took a four-point lead at the halftime break and built on it to win the match in 39 minutes and advance to the second round of the BWF Super 1000 event.

Gayatri Gopichand and Treesa Jolly, who were also semifinalists at the All England Open last year, defeated the seventh-seeded Thai pair Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Rawinda Prajongjai 21-18, 21-14 in a match that lasted for 46 minutes in the women’s doubles.

Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth scripted a stunning comeback win to defeat Toma Junior Popov in the men’s singles Round of 32 at 2023 All England Open.

Kidambi lost the first game 19-21 but made a quick comeback thereafter to win 21-14 and 21-5.

In the men’s double Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy defeated Krishna Prasad Garaga and Vishnuvardhan Goud Panjala 21-13, 21-13.

India’s men’s singles players HS Prannoy and Commonwealth Games champion Lakshya Sen progressed to the second round on Tuesday. (ANI)

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