Sindhu, Prannoy exit Badminton Asia Championships

P V Sindhu
Sindhu suffered her first loss to Han Yue. File photo: IANS

Ningbo (China): Double Olympic medallist P V Sindhu and World Championships bronze medallist H S Prannoy crashed out in the pre-quarterfinals of the Badminton Asia Championships here on Thursday.

Sindhu, who is desperately seeking to rediscover her form ahead of the Paris Olympics, fought hard for an hour and nine minutes before losing 18-21, 21-13, 17-21 to sixth seed Han Yue of China. Sindhu had a flawless 5-0 record against the Chinese coming into the contest.

World No. 9 Prannoy lost to Chinese Taipei's Lin Chun-Yi 18-21, 11-21.

The women's doubles combination of Tanisha Crasto and Ashwini Ponnappa also lost in the pre-quarterfinals, going down 17-21, 12-21 to the third-seeded Japanese pair of Nami Matsuyama and Chiharu Shida.

Sindhu started on a bright note and used her experience to race to a 8-4 lead, which she increased to 14-8 before the Chinese made a gallant comeback as errors started to creep up in Sindhu's game.

The Chinese engaged Sindhu in long rallies, tiring her up to draw level at 15-15.

With the momentum on her side, Yue never looked back from there on, keeping control of the proceedings to wrap up the first game.

A jolted Sindhu was in attacking mode in the next game and played aggressively, using her reach and experience to good effect to race to a 16-8 lead.

Although Yue tried her best to claw her way back into the contest, Sindhu didn't give any chance to her opponent and pocketed the second game comfortably to level the contest.

But Sindhu let the momentum slip after a good start in the decider, in which she led 8-4 initially.

The Chinese played aggressively and indulged the Indian in long rallies to tire her, and it led to errors.

From 10-10, Yue raced to 17-10 before Sindhu pocketed a few points to reduce the margin to 20-17.

Sindhu saved two game points but eventually her Chinese opponent shut the door on her rival. 

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