New Delhi: After recovering from a ligament injury, India`s ace shuttler Saina Nehwal will return to the international scene in her season-opening Korean Open Super Series in Seoul starting.
The 20-year-old, who missed the Indian Grand Prix, Super Series Masters Final and the Malaysian Open because of a ligament injury in her right leg, will take on Tzu Ying Tai of Chinese Taipei in the first round of the main draw.
Saina will hope to hit the right note from the start after missing action for more than a month. The world number four also has second seed Chinese Shixian Wang and fifth seed Dane Tine Baun in the second half of the draw.
Going by her last year`s form during which she won five major international titles, the girl from Hyderabad is expected to meet Julian Schenk in the quarterfinals, before taking on Shixian in the semis.
However, it remains to be seen if she would be able to shrug off the initial jitters, and be in her elements in the first tournament after her Hong Open Super series triumph last November.
In the men`s singles, P Kashyap will spearhead India`s challenge. Kashyap will face Thai Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk in the first round.
The Commonwealth Games bronze medallist`s tryst with tough draws continues -- even if he gets past the Thai, he will meet third seed Peter Gade in the next round.
Kashyap is in the second half of the draw, which also features Muhammad Hafiz Hashim, sixth seed Lin Dan and second seed Taufik Hidayat, besides England`s Rajiv Ouseph and seventh seed Thai Boonsak Ponsana.
Among others, Commonwealth Games gold medallists Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa will take on Mizuki Fujii and Reika Kakiiwa in the first round of the women`s doubles.
Jwala and V Diju, however, will not have it easy against Jenny Wallwork and Nathan Robertson in the opening round of the mixed doubles category.