Sindhu, Srikanth carry India's hopes at Denmark Open
Odense: Title-contenders P V Sindhu and Kidambi Srikanth would look to put behind the disappointment of an early exit from Japan Open and make a positive start to their campaign at the USD 750,000 Denmark Open Super Series Premier, which begins here on Tuesday.
Rio Olympics and World Championship silver medallist Sindhu have been in rampaging form this season as she has already bagged two titles at the India Open and Korea Open respectively.
After a gruelling week at Seoul last month, she couldn't sustain the intensity and suffered a second-round defeat against Japan's Nozomi Okuhara — an opponent she had some fierce battles recently — at the Japan Open at Tokyo.
The second seeded Indian, however, will be fresh after a three week training and would look to make amends when she opens her campaign against World No. 10 China's Chen Yufei, a rival she had beaten in the World Championship in August.
Chinese seventh seed He Bingjiao is likely to stand in Sindhu's way to the semi-finals. The left-handed Chinese has a 5-4 record against Sindhu even though the Indian had beaten her at Korea Open.
Slowly finding her foot back after battling her way through a career-threatening injury last year, Saina Nehwal will be looking for her first super series win in 16 months.
She had won the Australia Open last year in June, 2016 before a knee injury derailed her Rio Olympics dream.
The World No. 12 bagged a bronze at the World Championship but she lost to Carolina Marin at the Japan Open in the second round and the Indian will be itching for a revenge when she faces the fifth seeded Spaniard in the opening round.
The duo are locked 4-4 in head-to-head count but the last time Saina had beaten Marin was at the 2015 Dubai World Superseries Finals. The Indian has lost twice in straight games to Marin in the last two meetings and she would need a determined effort to get across the newly-crowned Japan Open champion. In men's singles, Srikanth starts as hot favourite after his three back-to-back final appearances out of which he won two titles at Indonesia and Australia.