New Zealand Open: Saina crashes out in first round
Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal suffered a shocking defeat in the first round of the New Zealand Open here on Wednesday. She was defeated 16-21, 23-21, 4-21 by China’s Wang Zhiyi, who is currently ranked as world number 212.
Saina, a World Championship silver medalist was trailing 0-4 in the first game and she was not able to bounce back in the first game, losing the first set, 16-21.
The 29-year old was stretched throughout the match, but she was able to bounce back in the second game, staging a 23-21 comeback and winning the second set.
But the Indian star player was not able to play her trademark game in the deciding set as Wang won eight consecutive points to easily win the set and take the match.
In men’s singles, Lakshya Sen lost to Taiwan’s Wang Tzu Wei by 21-15, 18-21 and 10-21.
Earlier in the day, the pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy fought valiantly, but they were defeated 4-21, 23-21, 14-21 by the Chinese duo of Liu Xuanxuan and Xia Yuting.
There was not much for the Indian contingent to smile but the men’s doubles pair of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy recorded a victory over New Zealand’s Joshua Feng and Jack Jiang.
Attri and Reddy won the match 21-17 and 21-10. (ANI)
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