Lacklustre India sent packing

Badminton Sudirman Cup: Saina only saving grace as South Korea win 4-1

Lacklustre India sent packing

 With their 1-4 loss to three-time champions South Korea in Group 1D, India were knocked out of the Sudirman Cup at the Dongfeng Nissan Sports Center here on Wednesday.

India’s best bet Saina Nehwal was the only shuttler to win a match as rest of her compatriots lost in all the other four categories of the World Mixed Team Badminton Championships. Group toppers Malaysia and South Korea qualified for the quarterfinals. India had lost their opening encounter 2-3 to Malaysia on Monday.

India started the contest on a losing note with Kim Gi Jung and Kim Sa Rang taking only 36 minutes to move past Pranaav Jerry Chopra and Akshay Dewalkar 21-10, 21-19 in the men’s doubles.

Later, women’s singles World No 2 Saina levelled the tie by beating Yeon Ju Bae in a marathon match that lasted an hour and eight minutes. Saina won the contest 20-22, 21-17, 13-21. 

However, the tide totally turned in favour of South Korea as it won the next three contests to totally dominate India.

World No 5 Son Wan Ho defeated Commonwealth Games men’s singles champion Parupalli Kashyap 13-21, 21-14, 21-13 in an hour and five minutes to give South Korea a crucial 2-1 lead.

It was all over when 2011 World Championships bronze medallists Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa lost a 56-minute women’s doubles battle to World No 75 Chang Ye Na and Jung Kyung Eun. The South Koreans won 18-21, 21-12, 21-12 to take an unassailable 3-1 lead.

The South Koreans displayed pure grit to upset their much-favoured opponents and bag the match for their team.

In the final match -- mixed doubles -- Kim Ha Na and Ko Sung Hyun took care of Manu Attri and N Sikki Reddy 21-12, 22-20.

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