World Badminton Championships 2017: Schedule for Indian players on Day 5
As the BWF World Championships 2017 reach their business end, the focus is back on the Big Three of Indian badminton--Saina Nehwal, P.V. Sindhu, and Kidambi Srikanth. Of the five singles players and one mixed doubles pair fighting for a place in the quarter-finals, only three of them advanced and will be carrying Indians' hope of a medal at the flagship event that culminates at the Emirates Arena in Glasgow on Sunday.
The pre-quarter-finals witnessed some edge-of-the-seat encounters with Sindhu and Nehwal stealing the show. There were upset too with the big one being women's singles top seed Akane Yamaguchi crashing out of the prestigious meet, going down to ninth seed Chen Yufei of China.
After Sindhu's epic come-from-behind win over 13th seed Cheung Ngan Yi of Hong Kong in a three-game thriller, 12th seed Nehwal shocked South Korean second seed, Sung Ji Hyun, to set up a last-eight clash with Scotland's Kirsty Gilmour. The 2015 losing finalist, who has overcome a career-threatening knee injury and recorded her only a title win this year at the Malaysian Masters GP Gold, should progress on Friday looking at her current form. Though Gilmour is a stroke player, her inconsistency has often seen her at the receiving end.
Two-time bronze medallist Sindhu, the winner of 2017 India Open Series Series, will square off against China's Sun Yu, a consistent performer in the Super Series and Grand Prix Gold events over the last few years. With a 3-4 record against Yu, who won the last duel between the two at the 2016 Dubai Superseries Finals in straight games, Sindhu needs to display a tactically strong game on Friday. With the way the Indian star is pulling off her matches, she seemed quite determined to change the colour of her Worlds medals in Glasgow.
After B. Sai Praneeth and Ajay Jayaram exited in the pre-quarter-finals, eighth seeded Srikanth will carry the burden of expectation of home fans in the men's singles. With three Super Series titles and a final appearance, the promising shuttler is in red-hot form but overcoming top seed Son Wan Ho will not be an easy task with the South Korean's strong defensive game being his USP. However, the 24-year-old Indian's three wins over Wan Ho this year gives him an edge in the draw. Should Srikanth advances on Friday, he is expected to meet Chinese legend Lin Dan in the semi-finals.
Here is the full schedule of the Indian players in action on Day 5 (Kindly note that the timings are in IST and are approximate ones as they subject to change according to the duration of the matches in the order of play.)
Kidambi Srikanth  vs Son Wan Ho  - 2.30 pm
P.V. Sindhu  vs Sun Yu  - 5 pm
Saina Nehwal  vs Kirsty Gilmour  - 11 pm