India had a good start at the World Badminton Championship campaign in Jakarta with Parupalli Kashyap and HS Prannoy starting off with convincing wins in the first round.
Kashyap, who is the reigning Commonwealth games champion, defeated Erik Meijs of Netherlands in straight sets. Seeded 10th in the tournament, Kashyap started with a 5-11 deficit and was struggling a bit with the drift but a quiet word with Gopichand during the first break ensured that he was soon back in business. He deftly managed the shuttle from that point onwards. Slowly, but surely, Kashyap allowed his opponent Erik Meijs to falter in the longer rallies and came through to the second round with a 21-17, 21-10 win. Kashyap will now face Nguyen Tien Minh of Vietnam in the second round.
Elsewhere, HR Prannoy was assured and secured a straight-set win in the first round. He defeated Alex Yuwan TJONG of Brazil 21-12, 21-16 in the first round match. Prannoy had a slight wobble in the second game and was down 1-7 but always packed enough firepower to bring down the young Brazilian. Prannoy will now face Edwin Ekiring of Uganda in the second round.
While it was good news in the singles category, the mixed doubles category produced two defeats for India. Arun Vishnu and Aparna Balan suffered an 18-21,21-10, 22-24 loss in the first round. They lost a close tie to the Russian pairing of Evgenij Dremin and Evgenia Dimova but not before Aparna Balan impressed with her deft net play.
Tarun Kona and Sikki N Reddy were also knocked out of the tournament when they were defeated 13-21 17-21 by Liao Min Chun and Chen Hsiao Huan of Chinese Taipei. Sikki Reddy did come back along with partner Pradnya Gadre to create an upset win over a higher ranked German pair in their first round womens doubles match to end the day positively for India.
Indian top players to kick off proceedings tomorrow
Big names like Saina Nehwal, Kidambi Srikanth, PV Sindhu, Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa will start off their campaign on Tuesday. India has hopes from this trio and we look forward to some absorbing matches in the coming days
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