Fuzhou China Open 2018: PV Sindhu and Kidambi Srikanth to lead Indian challenge
The stars shuttlers, Kidambi Srikanth and Pusarla Venkata Sindhu will lead the Indian contingent at the upcoming 2018 Fuzhou China Open, starting from next Tuesday. But there will be disappointment as 2012 London Olympic bronze medallist Saina Nehwal has pulled out of this HSBC World Tour Super 750 level tournament along with B. Sai Praneeth.
The Olympic and two-time World Championship silver medallist P.V. Sindhu will be looking for her first title of the year after a total of five final losses in 2018. She will be up against Evgeniya Kosetskaya of Russia. If she is able to win her first two matches, then she will probably face eighth seed He Bingjiao of China. The local favourite is in good form and has a 7-5 head to head record against Sindhu. The latter won the China Superseries Premier event in 2016.
Former World No. 1 and two-time Commonwealth Games champion Saina Nehwal will not be in action here in Fuzhou as she has pulled out, but the reason is yet to be known. The Asian Games bronze medallist will be marrying the 2014 Commonwealth Games champion, Parupalli Kashyap on 16th December later this year.
Kidambi Srikanth will try to reach his first final of the year. He has a very disappointing year as he failed to reciprocate last year's form in which he won 4 Superseries titles. He will probably face the in-form Chou Tien Chen of Chinese Taipei if he gets past the first two hurdles.
Srikanth will be looking forward to replicating the form of 2014 when he won the title in China Open Superseries Premier after beating two-time Olympic champion and five-time world champion Lin Dan of China.
H.S. Prannoy too will be in action against Asian Games gold medallist Jonatan Christie of Indonesia in men's singles. However, 2017 Singapore Open Superseries winner B. Sai Praneeth has withdrawn from the tournament.
Manu Attri and B. Sumeeth Reddy will be in action along with Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty in men's doubles. Both the pairs will play against the No. 6 and No. 7 seeded pairs from Denmark respectively.
Ashwini Ponappa and N. Sikki Reddy start their campaign against Shiho Tanaka and Koharu Yonemoto of Japan while Satwiksairaj and Ashwini will play their mixed doubles match against Olympic silver medallists Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying of Malaysia in the first round.
The Fuzhou China Open is a part of HSBC World Tour event of Super 750 level. The players will have great opportunity to gain major ranking points to qualify for season-ending HSBC World Tour Finals to be held in Guangzhou, China in December.