Saina Nehwal to begin campaign in Badminton Worlds from today
Guangzhou (China): Saina Nehwal will begin her campaign for an elusive medal against lower-ranked Olga Golovanova in the women`s singles, while male shuttler Ajay Jayaram will look to continue his good form in the second round of the World Championships here on Wednesday.
London Olympics bronze medallist, Saina reached the quarterfinals in 2009 and 2011 and would look to better her record this time but the 23-year-old from Hyderabad will have to be on her guard as her first match could be tricky.
The world number three, going through a lean patch for the last nine months due to injury and bad form, has lost to many lower-ranked players such as Indonesia`s Lindaweni Fanetri, Singapore`s Juan Gu and Japan`s Yui Hashimoto.
But after a six-week break, the Commonwealth Games champion is fully fit now and will look to seize the advantage this time as even the draw is also in her favour.
Meanwhile, Ajay Jayaram, after a stunning victory against world number 12 Wing Ki Wong yesterday, will now take on Spaniard Pablo Abian, who had beaten the Indian at the Spanish Open in 2009.
Although, Ajay had avenged his loss in Austrian International Challenge in 2010, the Indian will not take his opponent lightly in any way.
"I have played Pablo long back. He is a runner. I need to be patient especially as the shuttles are slow.I will have to create the openings before going for the attack," Ajay said.
World number 12 P V Sindhu, who is making her debut at the World Championship, will open her campaign against Kaori Imabeppu of Japan. Sindhu, who won the Malaysia Grand Prix in May, had beaten the world number 32 Japanese in Japan Open last year.
Sindhu, who is coming after a break because of a knee injury, will look to get across her Japanese opponent to set up a likely clash with second seed Wang Yihan of China.
In men`s singles, world number 13 Parupalli Kashyap, who had a rather difficult match yesterday, will be up against 68th ranked Petr Koukal of Czech Republic. If he can beat him, the Indian is likely to face his Banga Beat teammate in the Indian Badminton League, sixth seed Hu Yun of Hong Kong next.
In the men`s doubles, Tarun Kona and Arun Vishnu will meet 15th seeds Alvent Yulianto Chandra and Markis Kido of Indonesia on Wednesday.