Hong Kong Open 2023: India’s Lakshay Sen pulls out, Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand moves to next round


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India’s Lakshya Sen withdrew from the Hong Kong Open 2023 badminton tournament before his match on Wednesday, handing his opponent, Chinese Taipei’s Su Li Yang, a walkover.

Commonwealth Games champion Lakshya, seeded eighth in men’s singles, was India’s biggest bet at the Hong Kong Open 2023, which is being held at Hong Kong Coliseum in Kowloon. Other top Indian badminton players like PV Sindhu, HS Prannoy and Kidambi Srikanth had skipped the Hong Kong meet.

Lakshya Sen, who won the Canada Open Super 500 in July, pulled out hours before his match.

After world No. 13 Lakshya Sen’s withdrawal from the Hong Kong Open, Priyanshu Rajawat, India’s last remaining men’s singles player in the competition, also bowed out in the first round, losing 13-21, 14-21 against Kanta Tsuneyama of Japan.

Meanwhile, Indian duo Ashwini Ponnappa and Tanisha Crasto advanced to the pre-quarterfinals of the women’s doubles with a 21-19, 21-19 victory over the higher-ranked Chinese Taipei pair of Lee Chia Hsin and Teng Chun Hsun. According to the latest BWF rankings, the Ashwini-Tanisha team is 50th in the world, while Chia Hsin and Chun Hsun are ranked 21st.

Ponnappa-Crasto’s victory, however, was the only high point in what was otherwise a disappointing day for Indian shuttlers in Hong Kong.

In mixed doubles, Ashwini Ponnappa and Reddy B. Sumeeth, ranked 67th in the world, went down fighting against Chen Tang Jie and Toh Ee Wei of Malaysia – the world No. 9s. The Indian pair lost by a 16-21, 21-16, 18-21 margin in their round of 32 match.

Sikki Reddy and Rohan Kapoor, meanwhile, lost to Singapore’s Hee Yong Kai Terry and Tan Wei Han Jessica 19- 21, 10-21 in the first round.

The People’s Republic of China’s Zhang Yi Man beat Asian Games-bound Malvika Bansod 21-14, 21-12 in the first round of women’s singles main draw. Zhang Yi Man, a former world championships bronze medallist, dominated the Indian shuttler in both games.

Aakarshi Kashyap bowed out after losing to Yvonne Li of Germany 18-21, 10-21.

Krishna Prasad Garaga and Vishnuvardhan Goud Panjala fell 14-21, 19-21 to South Korea’s Ko Sung Hyun and Shin Baek Cheol in the opening round of men’s doubles.

With India’s campaign in men’s singles, women’s singles, men’s doubles and mixed doubles already over, only two Indian women’s doubles teams – Gayatri Gopichand/Treesa Jolly and Ashwini Ponnappa/Tanisha Crasto – will be competing at the Hong Kong Open on Thursday.

Lee Zii Jia is through to round two at the BWF Hong Kong Open 2023.

Malaysia’s badminton star eliminated Zhao Jun Peng (People’s Republic of China) 21-17, 21-16 on Wednesday (13 September)

The unseeded Lee, who suffered his fifth first round exit of the season last week at the China Open, was always in control and simply overpowered his opponent in the second set, leading by as many as seven points at one stage.

Lee is keen on earning more crucial qualifying points for Paris 2024 at this BWF World Tour Super 500 event.

Next up for the star shuttler is Lee Chia-hao (Chinese Taipei) who upset Olympic champion Viktor Axelsen 21-16, 21-10.

The 2021 world champion Loh Kean Yew has also crashed out in round one losing 21-12, 17-21, 13-21 to France’s Christo Popov.

Indonesia’s Anthony Sinisuka Ginting had little trouble defeating Brian Yang (Canada) 21-9, 21-14 to set up a second round encounter with Malaysia’s Leong Yun Hao. His compatriot Jonatan Christie is also through.

Earlier in the day, women’s singles top seed Yamaguchi Akane and Spain’s Rio 2016 Olympic champion Carolina Marin advanced to the second round.

Featured Image: The Bridge

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