India badminton star Saina Nehwal went down fighting in a three-set thriller against Thailand’s Busanan Ongbamrungphan in the pre-quarterfinals of Thailand Open.
India badminton star Saina Nehwal. (AP Photo)
- Saina Nehwal won a tightly contested first set 23-21
- She lost the second set 21-14 to her opponent from Thailand
- On Wednesday, Nehwal beat Malaysia’s Kisona Selvaduray 21-15, 21-15 in the first round
India’s badminton star Saina Nehwal on Thursday lost to World No.12 Busanan Ongbamrungphan of Thailand in the pre-quarterfinals and bowed out of the Thailand Open.
Saina Nehwal went down fighting 21-23, 21-14, 21-16 in a three-set thriller to Ongbamrungphan.
Nehwal started the game much stronger than her opponent and took the tightly contested first set 23-21. She had two set points at 20-18, but Ongbamrungphan fought back to level it at 20-20. She then took the lead and earned her first set point, but Nehwal did well to win three in a row and end the set.
But in the other two sets, Nehwal had too many errors and sprayed the shuttle beyond the line as her Thai opponent began to get dominant.
She eventually lost the second set 21-14, and could not recover after going down 11-7 at the break in the third set.
On Wednesday, Nehwal defeated Malaysia’s Kisona Selvaduray in straight sets to advance to the second round of the event.
This comes just two day after she was first reported to have tested positive for Covid-19 in the bio-bubble in Bangkok, only for a clarification later by the BWF that said that it was a false positive.
Srikanth pulls out with calf muscle pull
In other games on Thursday, Indian men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty lost to Indonesian duo of Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan in the second round to crash out of the tournament.
India’s Kidambi Srikanth pulled out of his second round match on Thursday due to a calf muscle pull, the Badminton Association of India said. The Indian star gave a walkover to Lee Zii Jia.
“Right Calf muscle pull. So gave walkover for today’s match. Should see how he improves in the next 5 days and then will decide about his participation in the next tournament,” BAI’s official statement on Srikanth’s walkover read.