Indian badminton star PV Sindhu is chasing her first title in over two years at the ongoing Syed Modi International 2022 being held at the Babu Banarasi Das Indoor Stadium in Lucknow.
The 26-year-old PV Sindhu last won a competition back in 2019 at the world championships.
PV Sindhu, a double Olympic medallist, has already reached the women’s singles quarter-finals of the Syed Modi International, with convincing wins over compatriot Tanya Hemanth and Lauren Lam of the USA in the first and second rounds, respectively.
In the final eight, top-seeded PV Sindhu will be up against Thailand’s Supanida Katethong, against whom she lost the India Open semis last week.
Evgeniya Kosetskaya of the National Badminton Federation of Russia is the other big name in the top eight of the women’s singles.
Meanwhile, in the men’s singles, Asian championship medallist HS Prannoy is carrying India’s hopes. He has also reached the quarter-final of the Super 300 event, where he will face Frenchman Arnaud Merkle.
The Syed Modi International is missing several big names after withdrawals due to the rising COVID-19 cases in India or due to the hectic badminton schedule in the second half of last year.
The absentees include world silver medallist Kidambi Srikanth, who had tested COVID-19 positive a few days ago, doubles players Ashwini Ponnappa and Manu Attri.
India Open winner Lakshya Sen also withdrew to manage his workload. He had been competing regularly since last October, reaching the business end of most tournaments.
London 2012 bronze medallist Saina Nehwal also pulled out of the competition.
The absence of heavyweights has given upcoming Indian talents like Aakarshi Kashyap and Malvika Bansod the opportunity to pick up vital ranking points.
The finals of Syed Modi International 2022 will take place on January 23.
Where to watch the Syed Modi International 2022 live in India?
The Syed Modi International 2022 badminton tournament will be telecast live on the DD Sports TV channel in India from January 21.
Live streaming of the Syed Modi International 2022 badminton tournament will be available on the official YouTube channel of Prasar Bharati Sports.