Swiss Open badminton: Sindhu, Prannoy in semis, Kashyap, Sameer Verma make exit

Basel, March 25 (IANS) India’s two-time Olympic medallist PV Sindhu and compatriot H.S Prannoy stormed into their respective women’s and men’s singles semi-finals at the Swiss Open here while the women’s doubles pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy made its exit from the World Tour Super 200 event on Friday.
Sindhu, who had made an early exit from the prestigious All England Open last week, made up for that disappointment by reaching the last-four stage here, beating Canada’s Michelle Li in a quarter-final encounter that lasted 36 minutes. Prannoy had to spend a few more minutes on the court as he got the better of compatriot Parupalli Kashyap, winning 21-16, 21-16 in 43 minutes in the event with prize money of USD 180,000 being played at St. Jakobshalle Basel.
India suffered a setback when Sameer Verma lost to third seed Anthony Sinisuka Ginting of Indonesia in straight games, 21-17, 21-14.
The women’s doubles combine of Ashwini and Sikki went down 20-22, 21-23 in a hard-fought encounter to Malaysia’s Vivian Hoo and Lim Chiew Sien in an encounter that lasted nearly an hour.
In the quarter-final clash with Michelle Li, two-time Olympic medallist Sindhu jumped to a big lead from 3-3 to 10-3 after winning six successive points. He extended the lead to 17-7 before going on to win the first games 21-10.
The Canadian player fought back in the second game as took an early lead and though Sindhu with her at 4-4 and took lead, Michelle remained on her heels and came close to catching up with her at 10-9 before finally managing to level scores at 16-16. The lead changed hands a couple of times before the Indian shuttler won the game 21-19 to seal the victory.
In the all-Indian quarter-final between Prannoy and Kashyap, the two players went neck-and-neck till 14-all in the first game before Prannoy emerged winner 21-16. In the second game, Prannoy took an early lead and though Kashyap tried to close the gap, Prannoy emerged 21-16 winner in the second game too to seal a place in the last-four encounter.

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