India’s top-ranked badminton players Lakshya Sen and Kidambi Srikanth crashed out in the first round of the men’s singles event at the Indonesia Open 2022 BWF Super1000 tournament, here on Wednesday.
World championships silver medallist Srikanth, 11th in the badminton rankings, lost to 41st-ranked Brice Leverdez of France 21-23, 10-21 in 42 minutes at the Istora Stadium.
Srikanth narrowly led Brice Leverdez 11-10 at the first break. However, Leverdez chipped away points regularly and eked out a close win. The 36-year-old Leverdez took the former world No 1 Srikanth by a complete surprise in the second game and sealed his first win against Indian shuttler in six attempts.
Meanwhile, India’s top-ranked men’s badminton player Lakshya lost to his senior compatriot HS Prannoy in the first round.
Prannoy, the world No 23, took just 34 minutes to overcome world No 9 Lakshya Sen 21-10, 21-9 for the first time in three meetings. Sen took an early 8-6 lead in the first game. However, Prannoy amped up his pace to take 15 of the next 17 points.
The second game was completely dominated by Prannoy from the first point as Lakshya could not match the intensity of his senior opponent and committed a series of unforced errors. The 29-year old Prannoy will face world No 12 NG Ka Long Angus of Hong Kong in the second round of the BWF Super 1000 tournament.
Earlier in the day, India’s men’s doubles pair of MR Arjun and Dhruv Kapila defeated the world No 30 pair of Keiichiro Matsui and Yoshinori Takeuchi of Japan 27-25, 18-21, 21-19 to book a clash against Tokyo 2020 silver medallists Liu Yu Chen and Ou Xuan Yi of China.
However, both the Indian women’s pairs competing on the day were knocked out. Haritha Manazhiyil Harinarayan-Ashna Roy lost to Jeong Na Eun-Kim Hye Jeong 9-21, 8-21 while Ashwini Bhat and Shikha Gautam lost to China’s Zhang Shuxian and Zheng Yu 9-21, 10-21.