Category Archives: Badminton

Badminton is a racquet sport played by either two opposing players (singles) or two opposing pairs (doubles), who take positions on opposite halves of a rectangular court that is divided by a net. Players score points by striking ashuttlecock with their racquet so that it passes over the net and lands in their opponents’ half of the court. Each side may only strike the shuttlecock once before it passes over the net. A rally ends once the shuttlecock has struck the floor.

Saina Nehwal’s All England loss dashes a billion Indian dreams

Olympic bronze medallist Saina, who has been competing at the All England since 2007, had never lost to the Spaniard and looked on course for an encore before the World No. 6 scripted a remarkable comeback in the second game to bury the Indian’s hopes. Saina threw away a 6-1 cushion in the second game before the Spainard pressed the throttle.

After suffering heartbreaks at the semis of the All England in 2010 and 2013, a billion hopes were riding on the 24-year-old Indian as she geared up for the finals. Although Saina played down expectations before her final but interest was such that former Indian cricket icon Sachin Tendulkar wished her luck on Twitter.

But for the Hyderabadi it was yet another case of so near yet so far for. But what forced the crowd’s favourite throw the towel so easily? Was it the burden of great expectations or simply, because she failed to fathom her opponent?

“I just lost focus and began hurrying, which was not right,” Saina said after the match. “Playing against top players anything can happen at any stage, and you can always get nervous at some point in time. That’s what happened here.”

For Saina, who defeated two top Chinese opponents, Wang Yihan and Sun Yu, on her way to the final, being nervous against Carolina was not expected as she has never lost to the Spaniard in her three previous meetings. Her latest victory came in the finals of the Syed Modi International championship at Lucknow in January early this year.


Saina bows out of Hong Kong Super Series

India’s campaign in the women’s singles of the $350,000 Hong Kong Super Series came to an end after ace shuttler Saina Nehwal was stunned by Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei in the quarterfinals in Hong Kong on Friday.

Seeded third, Saina went down 15-21 19-21 to her lower ranked opponent in just 39 minutes in Kowloon.

Before today’s match, Saina held a 5-2 edge over her Taipei rival. Last time the two met, the Indian had defeated Ying in the semifinals of Swiss Open in 2013.

World No. 4 Saina, who recently won the title at China Open, looked pretty rusty today.

The girl from Hyderabad was a pale shadow of herself in the opening game before she fought back in the second, but failed to make it to the next round.

Breaking away from a 2-2 tie in the first game, there was no looking back for the Taipei girl. She just kept on extending the lead, even as Saina played the catch-up game.

Although Saina tried her best, she always trailed behind Ying, seeded sixth. By the end of the opening round, the Taipei girl had surged ahead wrapping it up 21-15.

The Olympic bronze medallist, however, pulled up her socks in the second game and came up with a much-improved show.

It turned out to be a closely fought affair as the game tilted from one end to another and the two shuttlers were tied at 19-19. But the World No. 9 Ying came up with two consecutive winners just when it mattered most to seal the issue in her favour, thereby making it to the semifinals.


Saina to spearhead Indian challenge at French Open

London Olympic bronze medal winning shuttler Saina Nehwal will spearhead the Indian challenge in the $275,000 French Open Super Series, starting in Paris on Tuesday.

Seeded fifth in the tournament, Saina, will face Sashina Vignes Waran of France in the first round of women’s singles while compatriot P.V. Sindhu, seeded eighth, will meet a tougher rival in Porntip Buranaprasertsuk of Thailand at the Stade Pierre de Coubertin here.

Saina, who was the finalist here in 2012, is likely to face little trouble on her way to the quarterfinals. In case both Saina and Sindhu manage to cross the last-eight hurdle, they would clash against each other in the semifinals of the event.

In the men’s singles, Glasgow Commonwealth Games gold medallist Parupalli Kashyap will have an uphill task in the opening round itself, where he will be meeting World no. 4 Kenichi Tago of Japan.

K Srikanth, meanwhile, is expected to have an easy outing against a qualifier.

Other Indians in the men’s singles category, R M V Gurusaidutt and H S Prannoy, who last month won the Indonesian Masters Grand Prix Gold, will also face stiff challenge from World No.8 Hu Yun and World No.16 Kento Momota, respectively, in their first round contests.

In women’s doubles, star Indian pair of Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa will be up against the Netherlands duo of Eefje Muskens and Selena Peik in the first round.

The combination of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy will face fifth seeded Chinese pair of Liu Xialong and Qiu Zihan, while Pranaav Chopra and Akshay Dewalkar will take on another Chinese duo of Li Junhui and Liu Yuchen in the men’s doubles event.

In mixed doubles, the Indo-Russian combo of Ashwini and Vladimir Ivanov will play the qualifying round against local pair of Vincent Espen and Manon Krieger.

Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu in second round of Denmark Open

Indian shuttlers Saina Nehwal and PV Sindhu reached the second round of the women’s singles event of the Denmark Open Super Series Premier on Wednesday.

While 2012 London Olympics bronze medallist Saina was made to work hard for her 12-21, 21-10, 21-12 win over Germany’s Karin Schnaase, two-time World Championships bronze medallist PV Sindhu registered a 21-12, 22-20 victory over Hong Kong’s Pui Yin Yip at the Odense Sports Park.

Saina got off to a poor start in the first game, losing 12-21 before showing her class to win the second game 21-10 and continued to pressurise Karin with her regal smashes.

The World No.7 wrapped up the third game 21-12.

In the other match, Sindhu was in her element from the start as she didn’t allow Yin Yip to settle down.

The World No.10 Indian won the first game 21-12 before her opponent got some rhythm going in the second game.