Sai Praneeth Advances At Japan Open

Tokyo: Indian shuttler B. Sai Praneeth started off his Japan Open 2019 campaign on a winning note as he registered a comprehensive straight-games victory over Japan’s Kento Nishimoto in the opening round of the $750,000 tournament here on Tuesday.

Praneeth, who didn’t have as great a run in the recently-concluded Indonesia Open losing to Hong Kong’s Wong Wing Ki Vincent, defeated Nishimoto 21-17, 21-13 in the first-round contest that lasted just for 42 minutes.

Praneeth had pulled out of the last edition of this tournament and he came out with a confident performance this time around.

In the mixed doubles pair of Ashwini Ponappa and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy also advanced to the second round with an easy win over Germany’s Linda Efler and Marvin Seidel. The Indian pair defeated the duo of Efler-Seidel 21-14, 21-19 in 33 minutes.

However, there was disappointment in the men’s doubles event as India’s Attri Manu and Reddy B. Sumeeth lost to the Malaysian pair of Goh Sze Fei and Nur Izzuddin 12-21, 16-21 in a match when was played for less than an hour.

On Wednesday, ace Indian shuttlers P.V. Sindhu and Kidambi Srikanth will begin their tournament campaign in their respective events. Sindhu will face China’s Yue Han, while Srikanth will lock horns with compatriot H.S. Prannoy. Sameer Verma will also compete with Denmark’s Anders Antonsen in his opening round clash.