Saina crashes out of the World Badminton Championships

Written by: Biswajeet Panda
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Saina Nehwal
London, Aug 13: Saina Nehwal's quarterfinal jinx continued but Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa scripted history by becoming India's first-ever women's doubles pair to reach the semifinals of World Badminton Championship at the Wembley arena here on Aug 12.

World number six Saina, who reached the quarterfinals in the last two editions of the event, had to be content with yet another last-eight finish as she lost 15-21 10-21 to world number three Wang Xin of China in a lop-sided women''s singles match.

But the day belonged to Jwala and Ashiwni as the Commonwealth Games gold medallist pair registered a gritty 17-21 21-10 21-17 upset victory over 12th seeds Vita Marissa and Nadya Melati of Indonesia in a 47-minute duel.

The world number 21 pair will next face fifth seeds Qing Tian and Yunlei Zhao of China, who beat fourth seeds Mizuki Fujii and Reika Kakiiwa of Japan 21-16 21-10 in another quarterfinal match.

Earlier, Saina was not in her elements today as she struggled with her strokes and also committed too many unforced errors to hand over the match to the former world number one Chinese.

Playing with the breeze in the first game, Saina kept her shuttle up during her serves and took a 4-2 lead, but Xin caught the Indian off-guard at the cross court to draw parity before breaking off at 9-9.


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