Indian shuttlers make an early exit from the China Open 2023

Indian badminton stars HS Prannoy and Lakshya Sen were eliminated from the men’s singles event of the China Open 2023 badminton competition in Changzhou on Tuesday. HS Prannoy, ranked sixth in the world, fell 21-12, 13-21, 21-18 to Malaysia’s Ng Tze Yong in the opening round of the BWF World Tour Super 1000 badminton event. Meanwhile, Lakshya Sen was defeated by world No.10 Anders Antonsen of Denmark in his first match, 23-21, 16-21, 21-9.

HS Prannoy was outplayed by Ng Tze Yong in the first game and was unable to find his rhythm as the Malaysian won the first game with ease. The 31-year-old Prannoy, who earned a bronze medal at the World Championships last month, came back stronger and overpowered Ng Tze Yong in the second game to force a decider. Both Prannoy and Ng Tze Yong battled toe-to-toe early in the last game, but the Indian badminton player failed to maintain the effort and lost the 66-minute match.

Later in the day, Lakshya Sen engaged in a thrilling duel with world championship bronze medalist Anders Antonsen in the first game. The young Indian fell short in the first game but came back to win the second. Lakshya Sen, on the other hand, was unable to carry the momentum into the decider and bowed out following a 78-minute battle at the Changzhou Olympic Sports Centre’s Xincheng Gymnasium.

Earlier, India’s Priyanshu Rajawat was defeated by Indonesia’s Shesar Hiren Rhustavito 21-13, 26-24. Meanwhile, Gayatri Gopichand and Treesa Jolly, the only Indian pair competing in the China Open women’s doubles event, were defeated 21-18, 21-11 by China’s top-seeded combination of Chen Qing Chen and Jia Yi Fan, silver medalists at the Tokyo Olympics.

In the first round, India’s men’s doubles team of MR Arjun and Dhruv Kapila battled valiantly but fell 23-21, 21-19 against the Japanese duo of Keiichiro Matsui and Yoshinori Takeuchi. Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy in men’s doubles and Rohan Kapoor-N Sikki Reddy in mixed doubles will begin their respective campaigns on Wednesday.

India’s two-time Olympic champion PV Sindhu and former World No.1 Kidambi Srikanth have withdrawn from the competition. Both players were eliminated in the first round of the BWF World Championships 2023 a week ago. Sindhu and Srikanth will have plenty of time to prepare for the 2018 Hangzhou Asian Games after being named to the roster.