Hyderabad Open 2019: Sameer Verma, Sai Praneeth and HS Prannoy crash out on a day of upsets
Top-seeded Sameer Verma, who is still searching for his first trophy of the year, saw his title defence come to an end at the hands of 2013 world junior champion Heo Kwang Hee who dealt him a 21-18, 21-11 blow.
More disappointment followed for the home fans when the in-form second seed Sai Praneeth too fell in an enthralling three-game encounter with Indonesia's 19-year-old rising star Ikhsan Leonardo Imanuel Rumbay.
Sai, who reached the semi-finals at the Japan Open and the quarter-finals at the Thailand Open, managed to fight off the World No. 104 to take the second game. But the youngster was able to make a strong comeback in the decider to dash home hopes with a 21-17, 21-23, 21-15 win.
Third seed HS Prannoy was bundled out 17-21, 10-21 by Malaysia's World No. 170 Jia Wei Tan.
Fifth seed Subhankar Dey and seventh seed Sourabh Verma stopped the trend and emerged victorious in their respective matches to enter the second round. Dey rebounded in style after losing the first game, notching up a 19-21, 21-13, 21-16 win over Malaysia's Seng Zoe Yeoh.
National champion Sourabh Verma put up a strong display to record a 21-17, 21-14 win over Thailand's Adulrach Namkul.
Sai Uttejitha Rao Chukka and qualifier Aakarshi Kashyap were the only two Indians to make it through to the pre-quarter-finals in the women's singles draw which is bereft of the likes of PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal.
Chukka showed her fighting spirit in her gritty 21-14, 17-21, 21-10 win over Disha Gupta. Kashyap did not have to break a sweat in her 21-12, 21-18 win over Welsh qualifier Jordan Hart.
In men's doubles, seventh seeds Pranaav Jerry Chopra and Rohan Kapoor fell 18-21, 21-13, 14-21 to Indonesians Muhammad Shohibul Fikri and Bagas Maulana. Top seeds and defending champions Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty have pulled out following a hectic three weeks that saw them create history by winning the Thailand Open.