Basel: World No 9 PV Sindhu reached the quarterfinals while Saina Nehwal won her opening round match in women's singles at the USD 125,000 Swiss Open Grand Prix Gold here on Thursday.
The seventh seed lost a cliff-hanger first game to Canada's Li Michelle but displayed all her grit and experience to win the next two to enter the last eight. The World Championship bronze medallist ousted her unseeded opponent 19-21, 21-16, 21-11 in 54 minutes to take 2-0 lead in career meets.
Sindhu had also beaten the World No.23 Li in straight games in December 2013 to lift her second Gold Prix Gold title at the Macau Open. She will next take on World No.2 and third seed Shixian Wang of China in the quarters.
Fresh from her victory at the All England Open Badminton Championships last week, Shixian is in top form and Sindhu will have to play her best to take out the Chinese player. However, Sindhu can take heart from the fact that she has an unbeaten 2-0 record against Shixian.
Meanwhile, London Olympics bronze medallist Saina opened her campaign with a straight game win over qualifier Chisato Hoshi of Japan.
The sixth seeded Indian beat her Japanese opponent 21-12 21-12 in 34 minutes to progress to the second round.
Saina, who will be pitted against Sashina Vigneswaran in the pre-quarter-finals dropped a place world rankings to No 8 due to her loss in the All England Championship last week.
World number 36 Anand Pawar squandered a first game advantage to suffer a 21-14 12-21 12-21 defeat against Chinese Taipei's Tien Chen Chou in a 51-minute men's singles match.
This was Anand's third defeat to Chou. He had lost to the Taiwanese shuttler in German Open this year.
Pawar had fended off the challenge from another German Tobias Wadenka 21-11 21-4 in the second round. Top Indian male shuttler Parupalli Kashyap eased into the third round. The third seed Indian took 33 minutes to dispose off Lukas Schmidt of Germany 21-15 21-14 last night to secure his place in the pre-quarterfinals of the men's singles event.