India Open badminton: PV Sindhu crashes out, Lakshya Sen makes final

The men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also made it into the final and will face top seeds Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan of Indonesia.

By Ali Asgar Nalwala
Picture by Badminton Association of India

World championships bronze medalist Lakshya Sen registered a hard-fought victory while former world champion PV Sindhu suffered a shock defeat in the men’s and women’s singles semi-finals, respectively, at the India Open 2022 on Saturday.

Apart from Lakshya Sen, the men’s doubles Olympian pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also made it to the final after they defeated the French duo of Fabien Delrue and William Villeger 21-10, 21-18 in 37 minutes.

They will face world No. 2 and top-seeded Indonesian pair Mohammad Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan in the final on Sunday.

Lakshya Sen produced a strong comeback after going a game down to defeat Malaysia’s Ng Tze Yong 19-21, 21-16, 21-12 in a 67-minute contest.

With brisk cross-court smashes in the second and third game, Lakshya Sen snatched the momentum to enter the summit clash on his India Open debut.

Lakshya Sen will be facing the reigning world champion, Kean Yew Loh of Singapore, for the title. The Indian had lost against Loh in last year’s Dutch Open final.

Kean Yew Loh got a walkover after his Canadian opponent Brian Yang pulled out from the tournament due to a sore throat and headache.

In the women’s singles semis, PV Sindhu lost to Thailand’s Supanida Katethong, the world No. 33, 21-14, 13-21, 21-10 in 59 minutes. Kathetong shocked the world No. 7 in the first game.

PV Sindhu made a strong comeback to win the second game but Supanida Kathetong struck back in the third to book a spot in the final against Thai compatriot Busanan Ongbamrungphan, who defeated India’s Aakarshi Kashyap in the other semi-final.

Aakarshi Kashyap had started the match brightly against the second seed but squandered five game points to concede the first game. From there, world No. 12 Busanan Ongbamrungphan kept her grip on the match and sealed the contest 26-24,21-9 in 52 minutes.

In the women’s doubles semi-finals, India’s Haritha Manazhiyil Harinarayanan and Ashna Roy lost to Thailand’s Benyapa Aimsaard and Nuntakarn Aimsaard 21-12, 21-9 in 24 minutes.

In the other women’s doubles semi-finals, Anastasiia Akchurina and Olga Morozova, seeded third, received a walkover after their fellow Russian pair of Ekaterina Malkova and Anastasiia Shapovalova had to withdraw after Malkova developed back pain.

In the mixed doubles, second seeds from the Badminton Federation of Russia, Rodion Alimov and Alina Davletova, also had to withdraw from the semi-final after the former tested positive for COVID-19.

Indonesia’s Yong Kai Terry Hee and Wei Han Tan thus received a walkover and will face third seeds from Malaysia, Chen Tang Jie and Peck Yen Wei, in the summit clash on Sunday.

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