Thailand Open: Saina caps off a good day for Indians

Bangkok, June 5 (IANS) India’s Saina Nehwal moved in to the second round of the Thailand Grand Prix Gold badminton tournament with relative ease while compatriot Arundhati Pantwane had to fight hard in the opening round of women’s singles event here Wednesday.

Saina, who is ranked No.2 but is the top seed in this tournament, took just 29 minutes to demolish her Chinese Taipei opponent Shih Han Hung of Chinese Taipei 21-11, 21-16.

The 23-year-old from Hyderabad will next take on Febby Angguni of Indonesia in the second round Thursday.

Arundhati, who hails from Nagpur, had contrasting fortunes as she had top battle hard against Min Ji Lee of Korea but ultimately prevailed 14-21, 21-9, 21-15 in 45 minutes.

However, it was not all smooth sailing for the Indians as PC Thulasi lost 14-21, 17-21 to third seed Porntip Buranaprasertsuk of Thailand.

Indian men’s singles players also had a good day in the office with Sai Praneeth B, Ajay Jayaram, HS Prannoy, Sourabh Verma, Anand Pawar and K Srikanth reaching the second round.

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