Two-time champion Saina Nehwal survived a scare from a lowly-ranked Aprilla Yuswandari of Indonesia before prevailing in a hard-fought three-game battle to reach the quarterfinals of Indonesian Super Series premier in Jakarta today.
The fifth seed Indian,who clinched the title twice in succession in 2009 and 2010,beat world no 46,Aprilla 21-17 14-21 21-13 in a match that lasted almost an hour in the women’s singles competition.
The world number five Indian,who was the runners-up in the last edition,will next take on third seed Chinese Shixian Wang,who got the better of Juan GU of Indonesia 21-12 21-11 in another match.
Saina holds a 2-1 record against Shixian and had beaten the Chinese in the final of the Swiss Open Grand Prix Gold to clinch her first title of the season in March.
The Indonesian opened up a 3-0 lead first up and fought a hard battle till 14-14 before Saina registered five straight points to march ahead and grab a 1-0 lead in the match.
Not ready to take it lying low,Aprilla got into a fierce battle with Saina in the second game and surged ahead from 10-10 to bounce back in style.
In the decider,Saina,however,started playing more smashes and accumulated points from the nets. Aprilla lagged behind right from the start and soon ran out of steam as the Indian sealed the issue comfortably in the end.
Saina had won the Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold last week in Bangkok.
In men’s singles,Ajay Jayaram suffered a 15-21 14-21 loss to Indonesian Dionysius Hayom Rumbaka in 35 minutes to crash out of the tournament.
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