Sydney, June 21: Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu, Kidambi Srikanth and B Sai Praneeth on Wednesday stormed into the Pre-Quarter Finals of the ongoing Australian Open Superseries after defeating their respective opponents in respective categories.
Defending champion Saina registered a comfortable 21-10, 21-16 win against fourth seed Sung Ji Hyun in 39 minutes. PV Sindhu defeated Sayaka Sato of Japan by 21-17, 14-21, 21-18 to enter into Pre-Quarter Finals. After Sindhu gained the momentum and won the first game, Sato bounced back to dominate the second round. In the decider, Sindhu fought back, surging ahead after the changeover. However, Sindhu endured some nervy moments towards the end, wasting three match points before getting the win.
Earlier in the day, Srikanth who won the title of Indonesia Open recorded an easy win in straight games, defeating qualifier Kan Chao Yu 21-13, 21-16 in 27 minutes. Srikanth will now face World No. 1 Son Wan Ho in the next round. He had defeated Son in the semi-finals of the Indonesia Open last week. B Sai Praneeth also entered in Pre-Quarter Finals of Australia open after defeating Indonesia's Tommy Sugiarto by 10-21, 21-12, 21-10 in 47 minutes.
However, Ajay Jayaram, currently India's top-ranked male badminton player and HS Prannoy made a first-round exit. NG Ka Long Angus from Hong Kong defeated Jayaram by 14-21, 21-10, 21-9 while England's Rajiv Ouseph outclassed HS Prannoy by 21-19, 21-13 in a match lasting 37 minutes.
Meanwhile, other Indians including Parupalli Kashyap and Siril Verma, who had entered the men's singles draw after winning their two respective matches in the qualifiers ended their campaigns after losing to Son and Hans-Kristian Solberg Vittinghus respectively. While Kashyap gave a tough fight to the current World No. 1, winning the second game, he eventually faced an 18-21, 21-14, 15-21 defeat in a match that lasted 65 minutes. Siril lost 16-21, 8-21 against defending champion Vittinghus.