Lucknow, Jan 25:
Olympic silver medallist P V Sindhu hardly broke any sweat but defending champion Kidambi Srikanth had to toil hard to advance to the prequarterfinals of the USD 120,000 Syed Modi International Grand Prix Gold badminton tournament here today.
Sindhu tested the conditions at the Babu Banarasi Das Indoor Stadium en route to her easy 21-9 21-11 win over compatriot Anura Prabhudesai in a lop-sided women’s singles contest, while third seed Srikanth staved off a spirited challenge from fellow Indian Lakhanee Sarang 15-21 21-7 21-14 in his opening men’s singles match before notching up a 21-5 21-12 win over Malaysia’s Zulhelmi Zulkiffli.
The 21-year-old Sindhu, who won the China Open Super Series last year, will face another Indian Lalita Dahiya, while third seed Srikanth, who is coming back after recovering from an ankle injury, will face compatriot Ansal Yadav, who beat 16th seed Pratul Joshi 18-21 21-16 21-16 in another match.
Among other Indians in men’s singles, H S Prannoy, Verma brothers — Sourabh and Sameer, B Sai Praneeth and Harsheel Dhani also reached the third round.
2016 Swiss Open winner, Prannoy, seeded sixth and has been in rampaging form at the Premier Badminton League, brushed aside NVS Vijetha 21-11 21-9 and Bodhit Joshi 21-16 21-8 in the first two rounds to set up a clash with 15th seed Dhani, who defeated Aryamann Tandon 21-12 21-17 in another second round match.
Praneeth, seeded ninth, beat Aditya Joshi 21-14 21-9 in the first round and then defeated Ashish Sharma 21-15 21-10 to make it to the pre-quarters, while Chinese Taipei champion Sourabh, 11th seed, dispatched Rahul Yadav Chittaboina 21-11 21-17 before beating Shubham Prajapati 21-6 21-10.
Hong Kong Open finalist Sameer Verma, eighth seed, emerged winner in the opening game after Kartik Jindal retired when he was trailing 1-5 and the Indian then beat K Ajay Kumar 21-13 21-14 to make it to the next round. (PTI)