Last Updated: May 25, 2023, 21:39 IST
HS Prannoy and PV Sindhu (PTI)
PV Sindhu, HS Prannoy and Kidambi Srikanth won theri matches to book their places in the quarterfinals of the Malaysia Masters
Star Indian shuttler PV Sindhu and HS Prannoy booked their places in the quarterfinals of the Malaysia Masters with contrasting wins over their respective rivals on Thursday.
While double Olympic medallist and sixth seed Sindhu disposed of Aya Ohori of Japan in straight games in women’s singles, Prannoy had to dig deep to get the better of Shi Feng Li of China in a tough three-game men’s singles contest.
Taking the court first, world No. 13 Sindhu extended her domination over Ohori, ranked 28th, taking just 40 minutes to beat the Japanese 21-16, 21-11 in the round of 16.
Sindhu, thus, enjoys a commanding 12-0 head-to-head record against Ohori.
Sindhu will face China’s Yi Man Zhang in the quarterfinals.
World No. 9 Prannoy then overcame a game deficit to beat world No.11 Li 13-21, 21-16, 21-11 in one hour and 10 minutes to book his berth in the last-eight stage.
The day belonged to Prannoy, who caused a major upset by getting the better of the reigning All-England champion. Prannoy, who helped India win the Thomas Cup title last year, lost the first game to the in-from Chinese star, who surged ahead from an early 4-2 lead to open a 9-2 gap. The Chinese player maintained a 4-5 points advantage as he went on to win the first game 21-13.
The second game was closely fought and after Prannoy and Li Shifeng exchanged the lead twice, the Indian opened up a 6-3 lead. The Chinese shuttler narrowed the gap to one point before Prannoy won a few points in succession to make it 11-7. But Shifeng tied the scores at 11-all before Prannoy grabbed the lead again at 14-13 before making it 18-13 and went on to win the game and take the match into the decider.
In the third game, after the initial skirmishes, the 30-year-old Indian right-hander opened a gap from 4-4 to 8-5 before winning eight consecutive points to make it 16-5. Shifeng could not recover from that and he narrowed the gap to 16-9, Prannoy went on to win the game 21-11 and sealed a memorable win in the 70 minutes encounter.
The two players engaged in 103 rallies in the match of which Prannoy won 55 and the 23-year-old Chinese won 48.
Prannoy will next meet the winner of the match between third seed Jonatan Christie of Indonesia and Japan’s Kenta Nishimoto.
Coming into the match with a 0-3 head-to-head record, Srikanth notched up a 21-19, 21-19 win over Vitidsarn to also make it to the quarterfinals.
The 2021 World Championships silver medallist will meet Indonesian qualifier Christian Adinata.
Later in the day, Lakshya Sen lost to Angus Ng Ka Long of Hong Kong 14-21, 19-21 in the men’s singles round-of-16 match.
(With inputs from Agencies)
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