Olympic medallists Saina Nehwal and PV Sindhu will clash in the quarter-finals of the India Open 2017 Superseries event after both won their respective round two clashes on Thursday.
The last time these two heavyweights of Indian badminton clashed at the India Open was way back in 2014, when Saina Nehwal managed to beat PV Sindhu in straight games.
However, things have changed drastically in these years and the capital is bracing itself for a blockbuster clash on Friday.
Saina Nehwal was the first one to enter the last eight after thrashing Thai star Pornpawee Chochuwong 21-14, 21- 12 in straight games in just 34 minutes.
In the first game, Saina took a 3-0 early lead but it was cancelled out soon by Pornpawee who hit back with three successive points of her own.
Also read: Live Badminton Score, India Open 2017: Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu reach quarter finals
The two players went neck-to-neck as the score was locked at 9-9 in the first game at one point. However, from there on, Saina showed her international pedigree and played some vintage badminton to take the first game 21-14.
The second game was a more one-sided affair as Saina took the game to her opponent. The 2012 London Olympics bronze medallist won 11 consecutive points to take the second game 21-12.
2016 Rio Olympics silver medallist PV Sindhu too made short work of her second round match against Saena Kawakami of Japan.
Sindhu thrashed Kawakami 21-16, 23-21 in just 40 minutes to book a place into the last eight of the competition.
The first game was a tight affair, with both stars giving it their all. But Sindhu capitalised on some unforced errors by her opponent and took a 6-3 lead in the first game.
It was only after the game was locked at 10-10, Sindhu showed her true class and started to dominate the game. Sindhu’s brilliant base-line play helped her close the first game at 21-16.
The world number five was given a tough competition in the second game by her Japanese counterpart and the game went right to the wire, but in the end Sindhu’s experience at the top level helped her prevail, as he won the game 23-21.
With this win, Sindhu confirmed her qualification into the next round but most importantly, she set up a date with Saina Nehwal in the quarter-finals of the competition.
(With agency inputs)