DAIHATSU Japan Open 2023 (Day 2): PV Sindhu suffers another exit, Lakshya Sen and Chirag-Satwik duo qualify for second round.

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PV Sindhu lost to Zhang Yi Man of China in the first round of the Japan Open 2023 on Wednesday. It was her second first-round elimination at a major championship. PV Sindhu, a two-time Olympic medalist, struggled to get off to a good start against Zhang, giving up a 4-0 lead in the first exchanges due to glaring faults on the net. Zhang Yi Man took advantage of Sindhu’s mistakes to win the first game 21-12.

Sindhu started considerably better in the second game, making the Chinese struggle for the points. Zhang led 11-9 at the mid-game break, and she broke clear after the break to win the game 21-13, knocking out Sindhu.

This was her second consecutive opening round defeat after losing to Chinese Taipei’s Pai Yu Po in the opening round of the Korea Open last week. The Indian shuttler found it hard to match the intensity of her opponent on the day as she went down tamely in straight sets. Zhang Yi Man, rated one place lower than Sindhu, looked in command throughout the match and won in 32 minutes for her third victory against the Indian shuttler in five matches.

In an Asian Games year, Sindhu is having a bad season, making a first-round exit in six of her 12 BWF tournaments. Ealier this month, Sindhu crashed out of the Korea Open Super 500 badminton tournament, losing to Pai Yu Po of Chinese Taipei 18-21, 21-10, 13-21 in 58 minutes. Sindhu’s disappointing performances have seen her to slip to 17th in the BWF world rankings, her worst slump in a decade.

Her previous highest ranking was 2nd in 2016.

Results at Japan Open will be considered in the player’s qualifying rankings for the multi-sport event at Paris. The qualification window for badminton started earlier, on May 1.

Lakshya Sen and Priyanshu Rajawat battled it out in men’s singles, with Lakshay overcoming his Indian opponent. Lakshya won the first game 21-15 in a contest that lasted over an hour.

Priyanshu, world number 31, made a strong comeback in the second game, defeating Lakshya 21-12 to set up the decider. Priyanshu was defeated in the decider, with seasoned Lakshya winning the neck-to-neck fight 24-22 to go to the pre-quarter-finals.

The Indonesian team of Daniel Marthin and Leo Rolly Carnando gave the new world number two pair of Satwik Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty a strong battle in the opening round, but they managed to pull through. The Indonesian duo tormented the Indian team in the second game and forced the final before the Indian pair prevailed 21-16, 11-21, 21-13.

The duo won the match 21-16, 11-21, 21-13, but not before the Indonesians caused them problems in the second game and forced the decider.

In another men’s singles encounter, Mithun Manjunath lost a hard-fought struggle to Weng Hong Yang of China despite leading for the majority of the match. Mithun won the opening game 21-13 and had two match points in the second game until Weng Hong came back to win it 24-22

Chinese shuttler won the match 21-18. Due to an injury, the men’s doubles team of MR Arjun and Dhruv Kapila again withdrew midway through the opening game against the fourth seeds Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik with 5-15.

Featured Image: Badminton World Tour

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