While most of India’s top shuttlers are busy preparing for the upcoming Commonwealth Games to be held in Gold Coast from April 5, the 2014 Commonwealth Games bronze medallist RMV Gurusaidutt has been quietly making his progress at the Orleans Masters in Orleans, France this week. The 28-year-old won two rounds in qualifying and then won his opener in the main draw to progress into the second round of this Super 100 event.
The 161st ranked Gurusaidutt first beat France’s Jocelyn Deschamp 21-18, 21-16 and then followed it up with a 21-14, 20-22, 21-14 upset win over the seventh seeded Max Weisskirchen to book a main draw berth.
In the first round, he needed 39 minutes to prevail over younger compatriot, Siril Verma 21-17, 21-18. Gurusaidutt will next take on World No. 92 Kai Schaefer for a place in the pre-quarter-finals.
The Pullela Gopichand protégé could not build on his Glasgow Commonwealth Games success four years ago. A prolonged battle with an ankle problem and a subsequent surgery kept him out of action for nearly a year and he only resumed full-fledged competitive play towards the end of last year.
His ranking had nosedived to the 900s when he joined the BWF Tour again. By winning the Bulgarian International and by finishing as the runner-up at the Welsh International, he climbed his way back to the top 200s.
Lagos International winner Rahul Yadav Chittaboina joined him in Round 2, courtesy of a 24-22, 21-19 win over Luis Enrique Penalver. Kartikey Gulshan Kumar beat Vladimir Malkov 21-17, 21-18 and Kartik Jindal prevailed over Milan Ludik 21-11, 22-20.
National Championships bronze medallist Subhankar Dey squandered a one-game lead to succumb to a 23-21, 19-21, 15-21 defeat to France’s Thomas Rouxel. Shreyansh Jaiswal and Abhishek Yeligar also made first round exits.
In women’s singles, Mugdha Agrey and Vaidehi Choudhari both qualified for the main draw. Agrey came back from a game down to outlast Katia Normand 15-21, 21-18, 21-13. Choudhari showed the same fighting skills to get the better of Yaelle Hoyaux 21-19, 20-22, 21-18.Published 28 Mar 2018, 17:27 IST