All England Championship: Sai Praneeth stuns Lee Chong Wei; Saina Nehwal reaches 3rd round

March 11:Unheralded Indian shuttler B Sai Praneeth scripted the biggest wins of his career, stunning two-time Olympic silver medallist and former World No. 1 Lee Chong Weiof Malaysia in the opening round of the prestigious All England Championship here.

n a match that lasted 50 minutes, Praneeth punched way above his weight as he eked out a 24-22 22-20 win over three-time champion and second seed Lee Chong Wei in a men’s singles match late last night.

He will next take on Denmark’s Hans-Kristian Vittinghus, ranked 26th in the world. The Indian had retired midway in their only meeting in 2013 French Open.

Ace Indian Saina Nehwal, meanwhile sailed into the quarterfinals with a 21-16 21-9 win over Thailand’s Busanan Ongbumrungphan in the second round today.

The World No. 2 Indian, who is making a comeback after a long injury lay-off, had dispatched Commonwealth Games champion Michelle Li of Canada 21-17 21-12 in the opening round last night.

Kidambi Srikanth and Sameer Verma too entered the second round of the USD 550,000 tournament at the Barclaycard Arena here.

World No. 10 Srikanth showed the door to England’s Rajiv Ouseph, a silver medallist at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, 21-17 21-12. The Guntur lad will meet Japan’s Kento Momota, seeded fourth, here.

Young Sameer also dished out a superb performance as he dismantled Hong Kong’s Hu Yun 21-10 21-14 in another men’s singles match last night but he suffered a 21-10 12-21 19-21 loss to Chinese eight seed Tian Houwei in the second round.

For two-time bronze medallist at World Championship, P V Sindhu, it turned out to be yet another disappointing tournament as she lost 21-18 17-21 12-21 to Porntip Buranaprasertsuk of Thailand.

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