Prannoy defeats Srikanth
Lucknow: World No.10 H.S. Prannoy began his new year in style as he registered a stunning victory over World No. 3 Kidambi Srikanth 15-8, 15-11 in the Vodafone Premier Badminton League (PBL) here on Tuesday.
Prannoy, who is unbeaten in the PBL since last season, has now recorded his 10th successive win in the league, while Srikanth crashed to his second consecutive loss of the season.
Ahmedabad Smash Masters are currently level with Awadhe Warriors 3-3 in the tie with one match remaining. Prannoy, who had beaten his compatriot to clinch his first national championship last year, looked to be in stellar form and blitzed his way to an 8-2 lead at the break. Srikanth did try to stay in the match but could not muster enough and went down meekly in the opening game.
In the second game, the Denmark Open winner tried to get going in the match but Prannoy was clearly the better player on the court and raced to the victory in convincing manner.
In the marquee clash of the day, World No.1 Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei got the better of World No.10 and local favourite Saina Nehwal 15-5, 15-14 to help Smash Masters restore parity in the tie.
Saina looked nowhere close to her best and Tai Tzu took full advantage of her sluggishness. She won the opening game in no time. Saina did try to comeback in the second game and put up a strong show. However, it was not meant to be her day and after stretching Tai Tzu to the limit in the game, she finally went down to dash the hopes of entire stadium.
Earlier, Parupalli Kashyap came back from behind and beat Masters' Sourabh Verma 11-15, 15-13, 15-14 to send Awadhe 2-0 ahead (3-0 points).
Sourabh looked in great touch in the opening game and was hardly challenged by Kashyap. PTI