Bangkok: India’s ace shuttler PV Sindhu on Tuesday crashed out of the ongoing Thailand Open in the opening round after losing the hard-fought match against Denmark’s Mia Blichfeldt.
The star Indian shuttler had won the first game of the opening round comprehensively but Blichfeldt came back strongly and defeated Sindhu in back to back games to move into the second round.
The 74-minute match in which Sindhu tasted defeat (21-16, 24-26, 13,21) witnessed long rallies between the duo in the second game.
Earlier in the day, the Indian mixed doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Ashwini Ponnappa kicked off their campaign in the Thailand Open with a scintillating win.
The duo staged an upset in the first round as they defeated Indonesia’s Hafiz Faizal and Gloria Emanuelle Widjaja.
Satwiksairaj and Ashwini stunned the sixth-seeded opponents 21-11, 27-29, 21-16 in the opening round of the showpiece event.
Meanwhile, shuttlers Saina Nehwal, HS Pronnoy, and Parupalli Kashyap have withdrawn from the Thailand Open, Nehwal and Pronnoy tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday. The Indian squad, which travelled to Bangkok to participate in the Yonex Thailand Open followed by Toyota Thailand Open, had tested negative during the first two tests that were conducted earlier.
However, Olympic bronze medallist Nehwal and Pronnoy tested positive during the third Test, which was done on Monday. “We are constantly in touch with the BWF as well as the organisers and our team management and players. These are unprecedented times but BWF is doing everything to ensure full support to our players including their safety,” Badminton Association of India (BAI) general secretary Ajay Singhania said in an official statement.
After testing positive, both the players have been taken to the hospital to be isolated for a minimum period of 10 days. Parupalli Kashyap has also withdrawn from the tournament and is quarantined in his hotel room due to close proximity with Nehwal.
“According to the guidelines and safety norms, these three players will not be participating in the tournament. However, all other players have been allowed to participate but they have to play without the presence of coaches and support staff as per the safety protocols,” Singhania said.
A walkover was given to Kisona Selvaduray of Malaysia, who was to play her first-round match of the Thailand Open against Nehwal on Tuesday. (ANI)