Barcelona Spain Masters: Saina and Sameer Verma progress into quarters, Kidambi Srikanth crash out


saina nehwal

It was a mixed day for Indian shuttlers like Saina Nehwal and Sameer Verma moved into the quarterfinals of the Super 300 Spain Masters played in Barcelona on Thursday.

In all India second-round match, Kidambi Srikanth lost to Ajay Jayaram in two straight sets by 6-21, 17-21 to be knocked out. Srikanth could not match and struggled right from word go and made a lot of mistakes in the first game losing it by 6-21. In the second game, Srikanth fared much better but Jayaram showed his composure to win the match at 21-17. Ajay Jayaram will face T Rouxel of France in the quarterfinals. It is a massive dent for Srikanth’s chances to qualify for the Olympics.

sameer verma

Saina Nehwal had no problems of defeating Ukraine M Ulitina in two straight sets by 21-10, 21-19 to move into the quarterfinals. The Indian played with aggression and never allowed her opponent a chance in the first game. In the second game, Ukraine opponent gave a stiff fight, but Saina held her nerves to win the 2nd game at 21-19. She will take on the Ongbamrungphan of Thailand.

The mixed doubles pair of Pranav Chopra and Sikki Reddy went down fighting to number 1 seed Goh S H and SJ Lai of Malaysia in three sets by 16-21, 21-17, 11-21 to be knocked out. Pranav Chopra and Sikki Reddy struggled during the first game losing it easily at 16-21. In the second game, the Indian pair fought back strongly to level the tie at 1-1. Malaysian pair showed their class in the deciding game and won it easily at 21-11.

The women’s doubles pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and Sikki Reddy was given a bye in the first round. They will take on Stoeva Sisters in the 2nd round.

Sameer Verma defeated Germany Kai Schafer in three sets by 21-14, 16-21, 21-15 to move into the quarterfinals. He will face the winner of Kunlavut Vitisdarn of Thailand or Ireland’s, Nhat Nguyen.