All England: Sindhu cruises; Srikanth, Kashyap knocked out

Birmingham, 17 Mar: World champion P V Sindhu made an impressive start at the All England Badminton Championships but compatriots Kidambi Srikanth and Parupalli Kashyap suffered early exits after losing their respective opening round men’s singles matches, in Birmingham, on Wednesday.
Olympic silver medallist Sindhu gave a good account of herself as she covered the court well and dished out a disciplined performance to outwit world number 32 Soniia Cheah of Malaysia 21-11, 21-17 in 38 minutes.
After an initial neck and neck battle till 7-7, Sindhu went into the break with a three-point advantage. The Indian kept the proceedings under control to eventually wrap up the opening game in 16 minutes.
In the second game, Soniia managed to eke out a 10-8 lead but the Indian upped the ante to head into the interval with a slender 11-10 advantage.
The Malaysian strengthened her defence and managed to catch up at 17-17 with a run of three points. Two unforced errors by Soniia handed Sindhu three match points and she sealed it when the Malaysian went long again.
The fifth seeded Indian will face Denmark’s Line Christophersen next.
Kidambi Srikanth and Parupalli Kashyap suffered early exits in the prestigious All England Badminton Championships, losing their respective opening round men’s singles matches.
Seeded eight, Srikanth lost to Ireland’s unseeded player Nguyen Nhat 11-21, 21-15, 12-21 on the opening day of the tournament.
His match lasted exactly an hour as the player from Ireland came back strongly after losing the second game against the Indian.
Commonwealth Games gold medallist Kashyap went down in straight games to top seeded Japanese Kento Momota 13-21, 2-22 in 42 minutes.
However, the Indian duo of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy got the better of Thailand’s Benyapa Aimsaard and Nuntakarn Aimsaard in straight games, 21-14, 21-12, in a women’s doubles match that lasted 30 minutes.
Men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also progressed to the second round with straight game wins.
Ashwini and Sikki will face sixth seeded Bulgarian sisters Gabriela Stoeva and Stefani Stoeva next, while Satwik and Chirag will meet the formidable Danish pair of Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup Rasmussen, who had defeated the Indian duo on way to their title win at the Swiss Open. (PTI)