Saina, Kashyap, Jwala-Ashwini advance; Srikanth loses
Paris, Oct 21 (IANS) Indian shuttlers Saina Nehwal, Parupalli Kashyap and the doubles pair of Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa advanced but Kidambi Srikanth crashed out in the first round of the $275,000 French Open Superseries here on Wednesday.
World Championships 2015 silver medallist Saina registered a 21-18, 21-13 win over world No.15 Michelle Li of Canada at the Stade Pierre de Coubertin. The 25-year-old world No.1 took 42 minutes to win the first encounter between the two till date.
In the second round, top seeded Saina will face world No.18 Minatsu Mitani of Japan, who has defeated her in their last two meetings — at the Japan Open and the Denmark Open. Minatsu also defeated Saina in the final of the 2012 French Open.
Men’s singles World No.8 Kashyap moved past Belgian qualifier Thomas Rouxel 21-11, 22-20 in 41 minutes.
In the second round, 2014 Commonwealth Games (CWG) champion Kashyap will meet England’s Rajiv Ouseph, who got past Thai Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk 21-6, 21-12. Kashyap leads 5-3 in the head-to-head record against World No.22 Ouseph.
Fifth seed Srikanth lost to Chinese Tian Houwei 15-21, 21-13, 11-21 in an hour and three minutes. Now, Guntur-born Srikanth has suffered four defeats in as many games against World No.10 Houwei.
World Championships 2011 bronze medal-winning women’s doubles pair of Jwala and Ashwini took just 31 minutes to tame the Thai combination of Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Rawinda Prajongjai 21-15, 21-12.