BWF World Championships: HS Prannoy beats Lakshya Sen to enter quarterfinals

Indians HS Prannoy made a spectacular comeback by defeating compatriot and Commonwealth Games champion Lakshya Sen Men’s doubles pair of Dhruv Kapila and MR Arjun advanced to the singles quarter-finals to continue their stellar performance to make it to the last eight of the World Championships here on Thursday.

It was a fierce one hour and 15 minutes fight between Lakshya and Prannoy, who eventually defeated their teammate 17-21, 21-16, 21-17. This was the fourth meeting of the year for the two Indians after Prannoy’s win, their one-on-one record at 2-2.

Prannoy will now face Zhao Jun Peng of China in the quarterfinals.

Besides Prannoy, two Indian men’s doubles pairings of Dhruv Kapila and MR Arjun and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also advanced to the quarterfinals. However, Olympic bronze medalist Saina Nehwal crashed out of the World Championships after losing to Busanan Ongbamrungphan in the women’s singles pre-quarterfinals.

The 32-year-old lost 17-21 21-16 13-21 to her Thai rival, who extended her head-to-head record against the Indian to 5-3. Saina was immediately put under pressure by Ongbamrungphan as she led 11-3 in the opening game.

The two-time World Championship medalist was able to bridge the gap 17–19, but Ongbamrungphan mustered up the courage to take the first game.

A late bounce in the previous game gave Saina confidence as the former world No 1 led 11-7 at the break. Playing aggressively, he continued to set the conditions, making the match decisive. The third game was played on equal wedge till the interval, but Ongbamrungfan started to pick up the pace and took a five-point lead as Saina slowly started losing steam.

In the end, 26-year-old Ongbamrungphan, who has now won the last five matches against Saina, had seven match points as she sealed her quarter-final berth.

The unseeded Indian pair of Arjun and Kapila fought hard for 58 minutes as they won the round of 16 against Terry Hee and Loh Keen Heen of Singapore.

Both have done well in the tournament. They defeated eighth seeded and previous edition bronze medalists Kim Astrup and Anders Skarup Rasmussen of Denmark 21-17, 21-16 in their second round match.

On the other hand, Satwik and Chirag beat Denmark’s Jeppa Bay and Lasse Molhede 21-12, 21-10 in 35 minutes.

Arjun and Kapila will take on third seeded Indonesian pair of Mohd Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan in the last eight stage, while Satwik and Chirag will take on second seeded Japanese pair of Takuro Hoki and Yugo Kobayashi in the quarterfinals.

with PTI input