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Srikanth, Saina, Sindhu, Praneeth advance in Australian Open

By The Assam Tribune

SYDNEY, June 21: Newly-crowned Indonesia Open champion K Srikanth and title-holder Saina Nehwal progressed to the second round with contrasting wins at the Australian Super Series here today.

Olympic silver-medallist PV Sindhu and Singapore Open Champion B Sai Praneeth also entered the second round but it was curtains for four other singles player, including giant-slayer HS Prannoy.

Srikanth continued his good form by defeating Chinese Taipei�s Kan Chao Yu 21-13, 21-16 in the men�s singles opening round while Sai Praneeth had to sweat it out to register a hard-fought 10-21, 21-12, 21-10 win over Indonesia�s Tommy Sugiarto.

Srikanth will next play top seed Son Wan Ho of Korea, while Sai Praneeth will be up against Huang Yuxiang of China.

In the women�s singles, Saina was up against a tough opponent in fourth seed Sung Ji Hyun of Korea but the former World No. 1 showed her masterclass to beat her opponent in straight games 21-10 21-16. Saina will face Malaysia�s Soniia Cheah in her next match.

Olympic silver-medallist PV Sindhu saw off Indonesia Super Series Premier champion Sayaka Sato of Japan 21-17, 14-21, 21-18 in a match that lasted an hour and five minutes.

The fifth seeded Indian will face China�s Chen Xiaoxin, who ended Ruthvika Shivani Gadde�s gallant fight in another match. Shivani fought for an hour before losing 17-21, 21-12, 12-21 to Chen.

The Indian women�s doubles pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy defeated Australia�s Hsuan-Yu Wendy Chen and Jennifer Tam 21-11, 21-13 to reach the second round.

Young men�s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty dished out a gritty performance to knock out the Hong Kong combo of Law Cheuk Him and Lee Chun Hei Reginald 20-22, 21-19, 21-11.

However, it was curtains for HS Prannoy, who lost in the semifinals in Indonesia, Ajay Jayaram, Parupalli Kashyap and Siril Verma in the men�s singles first round.

Up against seventh seed Ng Ka Long Angus of Hong Kong, Jayaram fought hard before losing 14-21, 21-10, 21-9. � PTI

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