All eyes were on PV Sindhu as the star Indian shuttler was making a comeback after winning the bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics. Sindhu did not disappoint her fans on the opening day of the Victor Denmark Open with a quick-fire victory in the women’s singles first round.
The first day of the five-day BWF World Tour Super 1000 badminton tournament turned out to be a fruitful one for the Indian shuttlers. The majority of Indian players posted wins to move up in Odense, Denmark, on Tuesday.
Fourth seed PV Sindhu made light work of Neslihan Yigit of Turkey with a commanding 21-12, 21-10 victory in exactly half an hour. After claiming her second Olympic medal in Tokyo a couple of months ago, Sindhu opted to rest and skipped the Sudirman Cup and Uber Cup.
Sindhu completes hat-trick of wins over Yigit
World No. 7 Sindhu was always in control during her opening contest against Yigit. It was the third successive win for Sindhu against her Turkish opponent, ranked 29th in the world.
After an initial hiccup, the 26-year-old Indians took the lead at 5-4 and then kept moving ahead to easily grab the opening game.
The tall Hyderabadi shuttler erased a 1-3 deficit to jump to a 10-4 lead. Yigit staged a comeback to make it 9-10. However, Sindhu held a two-point (11-9) advantage at the break.
Post resumption, Sindhu completely demolished Yigit with a series of winners to complete a fine win.
Sindhu will lock horns with Thailand's Busanan Ongbamrungphan for a place in the quarter-finals on Wednesday.
Kidambi Srikanth beats Sai Praneeth in all-India affair
Winner of the 2017 Denmark Open, Kidambi Srikanth defeated compatriot B Sai Praneeth 21-14, 21-11 in 30 minutes. With the win, Srikanth improved the head-to-head record to 6-3 against his regular practice partner, Sai Praneeth, the world No. 15.
World No. 14 Srikanth will take on world No. 1 Kento Momota of Japan in the second round on Wednesday.
Sameer Verma shocked higher-ranked Thailand's world No. 21 Kunlavut Vitidsarn 21-17, 21-14 in 42 minutes. World No. 28 Sameer is likely to square off against third seed Anders Antonsen of Denmark in the second round.
Satwiksairaj-Chirag got off to brilliant start
Indian doubles players also had a good day. World No. 7 Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty thumped the English pair of Callum Hemming and Steven Stallwood 23-21, 21-15 in their first round outing.
MR Arjun and Dhruv Kapila also fared well as the young duo upset England's world No. 17 pair of Ben Lane and Sean Vendy 21-19, 21-15.
Former ace doubles pair Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy bowed out with a 18-21, 11-21 defeat to Malaysia's Goh Sze Fei and Nur Izzuddin.
New pair Dhruv Kapila and Sikki Reddy upset Malaysian duo
Dhruv Kapila and N Sikki Reddy had a splendid start to their mixed doubles campaign. New pair Dhruv Kapila and Sikki Reddy rallied back strongly to surprise Hoo Pang Ron and Cheah Yee See of Malaysia 14-21, 21-17, 21-18.
Dhruv and Sikki needed 51 minutes to get the better of the world No. 25 Malaysians.
Indian Results (Round 1)
Kidambi Srikanth bt B Sai Praneeth 21-14, 21-11 (30 minutes)
Sameer Verma bt Kunlavut Vitidsarn (Thailand) 21-17, 21-14 (42 minutes)
4-PV Sindhu bt Neslihan Yigit (Turkey) 21-12, 21-10 (30 minutes)
7-Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-Chirag Shetty bt Callum Hemming-Steven Stallwood (England) 23-21, 21-15 (39 minutes)
MR Arjun-Dhruv Kapila bt Ben Lane-Sean Vendy (England) 21-19, 21-15 (39 minutes)
Manu Attri-B Sumeeth Reddy lost to Goh Sze Fei-Nur Izzudin (Malaysia) 18-21, 11-21 (30 minutes)
Dhruv Kapila-N Sikki Reddy bt Hoo Pang Ron-Cheah Yee See (Malaysia) 14-21, 21-17, 21-18 (51 minutes).