Defending champ Saina bows out of Australian Open
Indian challenge ended at the Australian Open Super Series after ace shuttler Saina Nehwal suffered a straight-game defeat against China’s Shixian Wang in the women’s singles quarterfinals of the badminton tournament here on Friday.
World No.1 Saina failed to stick to her game plan and suffered a 15-21, 13-21 loss to two-time All England Champion and fifth seed Shixian in a 41-minute clash. It was Saina’s sixth defeat against the Chinese in 12 meetings. In the opening game, Saina had grabbed a slender lead of 4-2 but Shixian soon wrested control of the match and went into the break at 11-8. Slowly and steadily, Saina clawed back to 14-14 but a ruthless Shixian reeled off six straight points to grab a massive <g data-gr-id="14">six game</g> point at 20-14 and then pocketed the match without much ado.
In the second game, Shixian once again opened up a three-point lead at 6-3. The Indian tried to arrest the slide and went neck and neck from 6-6 to 10-10 but after that the Chinese moved ahead with giant steps to once again leave Saina behind.