File image Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty© AFP
Star Indian shuttlers Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty beat Chinese Taipei’s Lee Yang and Lu Chen to progress to the men’s doubles second round of the Hylo Open Super 300 tournament in Saarbrucken, Germany on Wednesday. The third seeded Indians, who won the French Open Super 750 title last week for their biggest win on the world tour, overcame a game deficit to beat Yang and Chen 19-21 21-19 21-16 in their first-ever meeting. The world number eight pairing next face England’s Rory Eastron and Zach Russ. Satwik and Chirag is having a dream run this year. They won the Indian Open, Commonwealth Games gold, Thomas Cup crown and an unprecedented bronze at the World Championships in August.
In other Indian results, H S Prannoy and men’s doubles pair of M R Arjun-Dhruv Kapila gave walkovers to their respective rivals in their first-round matches. London Olympics bronze medallist Saina Nehwal made another first round exit, losing 15-21 8-21 to Thailand’s fourth seed Busanan Ongbamrungphan in the women’s singles event.
However, Malvika Bansod fought her way into the second round of the women’s singles with a hard-fought 20-22 21-12 21-6 win over Spain’s Clara Aazurmendi.
Bansod will next play Scotland’s seventh seed Kirsty Gilmour of Scotland.
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