Sameer Verma makes a winning start at French Open

Sameer Verma
Sameer Verma has been in fine form recently. File photo: AFP

Paris: India's Sameer Verma progressed to the second round of French Open Super 750 badminton tournament with a straight game win over Lee Dong Keun here on Tuesday.

The 25-year-old from Madhya Pradesh, who had won three titles to qualify for the 2018 World Tour finals, beat the Korean 21-14, 21-12 in 54 minutes in the men's singles opening round.

This was Sameer's first win over the Korean, having lost to him twice in the past.

Sameer had stunned world No. 3 Anders Antonsen of Denmark at the Denmark Open second round last week before retiring in the quarterfinals due to a calf muscle injury. His performance helped him improve to world No. 21 in the latest Badminton World Federation ranking chart.

In mixed doubles, Dhruv Kapil and N Sikki Reddy put up a gallant fight before losing 19-21, 19-21 to fifth-seeded Malaysian combination of Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying in their opening match.

Double Olympic medallist P V Sindhu, Saina Nehwal, Kidambi Srikanth, B Sai Praneeth and Lakshya Sen are among other Indians in the fray. 

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