The most encouraging result for the youthful men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty, who achieved what was arguably the best result of their fledgling career as a unit. India’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty, ranked 32nd, stunned World no 6 Danish combo of Mads Conrad-Petersen and Mads Pieler Kolding to reach their second quarter-final of the season.
In men’s doubles category, Satwiksairaj and Chirag dished out a superb performance as they shocked the 2016 European champions Conrad-Petersen and Kolding 22-20 12-21 21-19 to reach the quarterfinals.The duo, who had reached the quarters at Korea Open as well, had disposed off Frances Bastian Kersaudy and Julien Maio 21-12, 21-14 in 30 minutes in the opening round
Despite being swept off their feet in the middle game, Rankireddy and Shetty maintained their cool in the first and third games, to win the points that mattered in the ultimate analysis.The Indians’ reward was a quarter-final meeting on Friday with the world’s top ranked combination of Denmark’s Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen, who would be looking to shrug off their shock exit at the same last-eight stage of their home tournament last week, and to go all the way in this one.
Eighth-seeded Kidambi Srikanth, who has risen four spots to the fourth position in the latest Badminton World Federation (BWF) rankings, and who had beaten Wong Wing Ki Vincent in straight games in the semi-final last Saturday on his way to the Danish title, repeated his triumph over the Hong Kong bustler in similar fashion, and by almost identical scores — 21-19, 21-17 in 37 minutes, compared to the 21-18, 21-17 verdict that had used up two additional minutes at Odense Park.
As for the red-hot Srikanth, whose exploits are being closely monitored by the global badminton community with an eye to locate a way of halting his all-conquering march, he faces a challenging quarter-final with China’s No 4 seed, Shi Yuqi, whom he displaced from the fourth rung of the BWF ladder in the latest rankings. The 21-year-old Chinese player beat Frenchman Brice Leverdez in a canter at 21-15, 21-10 on Thursday.
Second-seeded PV Sindhu played far better than she had on the opening day of the $325,000 event, and overwhelmed Japan’s Sayaka Takahashi by a 21-14, 21-13 margin. The gangling Indian, who appeared sharp and aggressive against the Japanese, earned a revenge quarter-final meeting with Chinese teenager Chen Yufei, who had knocked her out in the opening round of the Denmark Open last week in two straight, albeit tough, games.
The most impressive Indian performer of the day was HS Prannoy, who made light of what could have been a tricky pre-quarter-final clash with Denmark’s Hans-Kristian Solberg Vittinghus, winning at 21-11, 21-12 in a minute under the half-hour mark.
The 25-year-old Prannoy, who was born in Kerala, but has been training in Hyderabad now for several years, showed a confident streak while taming the man who had sent the tournament’s second seed, Son Wan Ho of South Korea, home in his opening outing.
In Friday’s quarter-finals, Prannoy runs into another Korean, Jeon Hyeok Jin, who settled the pretensions of China’s Qiao Bin in a long-drawn battle at 21-16, 13-21, 21-12. Giant-killer Jeon, who had easily knocked out an off-colour No 5 seed, Chou Tien Chen of Chinese Taipei, in his lung-opener, clashes with Prannoy in the final quarter of the draw.