All England Championship: Saina Nehwal ousted by Tai Tzu-ying; Indian campaign ends

March 12:Ace Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal was on Friday knocked out of All England Championship with straight game loss in the quarters.

The 25-year-old, who earlier eased past Thailand’s Busanan Ongbumrungphan to enter the second round of the tournament, lost to Tai Tzu-ying 15-21, 16-21 at the Barclaycard Arena today.

Earlier, Indian male shuttlers’ campaign in the tournament also came to a halt on Friday with the trio of B Sai Praneeth, Kidambi Srikanth and Sameer Verma making an exit in the second round of the singles event.

Praneeth, who had stunned two-time Olympic silver medallist and former World No. 1 Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia in the opening round, lost to Hans-Kristian Vittinghus of Denmark in a three-setter to bow out of the prestigious tournament.

The Indian raised visions of another upset win as he took the first set but later fizzled out in the subsequent two to lose the match 21-12 11-21 16-21.

The highest ranked Indian Srikanth was no match for fourth seed Kento Momota of Japan as he lost 10-21 13-21 in a lopsided match.

Qualifier Sameer Verma put a good fight before losing to eighth seed Tian Houwei of China in a three-setter. Just like Praneeth, Verma took the first set but squandered the advantage as he lost 21-10 12-21 19-21.

With the exit of all the Indian male shuttlers, only top women’s player Saina Nehwal still remains in the fray in the USD 550,000 tournament at the Barclaycard Arena here.

P V Sindhu had crashed out of the women’s singles in the first round itself. The women’s doubles team of Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa had also made an exit in the opening round while the men’s doubles duo of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy did the same.

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