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Malaysia Masters 2019: Saina Nehwal loses in the semi-finals 

Pavan Suresh
19 Jan 2019, 17:52 IST

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The Indian challenge came to end at the Malaysian Masters as Saina Nehwal lost to Olympic Champion, Carolina Marin in the semi-finals of Super Level 500 played at Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on Saturday. It was a disappointing performance by the Indian who was outplayed by her opponent in all departments.

Saina Nehwal got off to a brilliant start in the first game taking an early 5-1 lead. The Rio Olympic Champion came back strongly to level scores at 5-5 and then dominated the play to take a 9-5 lead. Nehwal fought to equalize at 9-9. At the interval, Carolina Marin led 11-9. After the interval, Saina Nehwal played aggressive badminton to level the scores again at 14-14. Marin was strong enough to increase the lead and won the first set 21-16 despite Saina Nehwal trying to make a comeback.

It was a one sided affair in the 2nd game as Marin dominated Saina Nehwal right from the word go. Marin took a commanding 5-1 lead and continued to play aggressive badminton. At the interval, Marin led 11-6. After the interval, the Spaniard made the life tough for Saina and won the second set easily at 21-13 to move into finals of the tournament.

Saina Nehwal had a decent tournament in Malaysia. She had defeated Nozomi Okuhara in the quarter finals on Friday.

Kidambi Srikanth also performed reasonably well reaching the quarter finals losing to Son Wan-Ho in three gruelling sets.

Carolina Marin was too strong for Saina Nehwal in Saturday’s semi-finals. The Rio Olympic champion played with precision and accuracy. Saina Nehwal and other Indian shuttler’s will be looking to perform well in the upcoming Indonesia Masters.


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