Singapore Open 2018: Sourabh Verma beats Parupalli Kashyap, Sai Praneeth ousted
Indian shuttlers had mixed fortunes on Day 2 of the Singapore Open 2018 as both B Sai Praneeth and Parupalli Kashyap crashed out of this Super 500 tournament on Wednesday, even though Sourabh Verma progressed to the second round. Among the women, former national champions Rituparna Das and Ruthvika Shivani Gadde began their challenge on a winning note.
In an all-Indian first round clash, former Chinese Taipei Masters winner Sourabh Verma looked in top form as he needed only 15 minutes to pummel Kashyap 21-9, 21-6 in a totally one-sided affair. Verma will next face Vietnam’s Tien Ming Nguyen for a place in the quarter-finals.
Sai’s title defence ends
Sixth seeded Sai Praneeth had fond memories of winning this tournament 12 months ago, when he edged Kidambi Srikanth in three games. His return to the venue did not prove to be a memorable one as he headed for the exit after a tough first round match with Japan’s World No. 59 Yu Igarashi. Despite winning the first game, Sai went down 21-16, 16-21, 18-21 in 1 hour 11 minutes.
Former Commonwealth Games bronze medallist RMV Gurusaidutt too failed to cross the first round hurdle. He was defeated 14-21, 19-21 by China’s Qiao Bin.
Subhankar Dey was the only other Indian to make it through to the second round in men’s singles, when he posted a hard-fought 14-21, 21-14, 21-16 victory over Canada’s Jason Anthony Ho-Shue. Next up for the Indian is the top seed and World No. 7 Chou Tien Chen.
In women’s singles, South Asian Games gold medallist Gadde needed three games to get the better of Linda Zetchiri 21-15, 17-21, 21-16. Awaiting her in the second round is the fifth seed Sayaka Takahashi.
Das advanced to the second round when her opponent, Sabrina Jaquet retired trailing 3-5 in the first game.
Among the other Indians in the same category, Sai Uttejitha Rao Chukka’s valiant fight came to an end when she was beaten 23-21, 4-21, 6-21 by the World No. 28 Beatriz Corrales. Vaidehi Choudhari, Vaishnavi Reddy Jakka and Mugdha Agrey all succumbed to first round defeats in straight games.
In mixed doubles, eighth seeds Pranaav Jerry Chopra and N Sikki Reddy had to work hard to register a 21-19, 16-21, 21-12 win over German qualifiers Jones Ralfy Jansen and Carla Nelte. Reddy had mixed fortunes as she could not repeat her success in women’s doubles and crashed out 21-18, 13-21, 14-21 to NG Tsz Yau and Yuen Sin Ying alongside Ashwini Ponnappa.
Second seeds Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty were the only Indians to make it through to Round 2 in men’s doubles. The India No. 1 pair edged Singapore’s Rizky Hidayat and Loh Kean Hean 21-16, 24-22. The pairs of Arjun MR-Shlok Ramchandran and Arun George-Sanyam Shukla did not have the same fortunes as they went down fighting in three tight games.