Indian Open champs Saina, Srikanth now eye Malaysian title
Just two days after winning the India Open, World No 1 Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth will look to continue their fairytale run in Kuala Lumpur
Kuala Lumpur: Newly-crowned India Open champions, Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth will look to continue their fairytale run as they eye another podium finish at the USD500,000 Malaysia Open Super Series Premier which gets underway with the qualifiers today.
Saina Nehwal celebrates her India Open win over Ratchanok Intanon at the Siri Fort Sports complex in New Delhi. Pic/AFP
Left with hardly any time to celebrate their maiden title wins at the India Super Series, Saina and Srikanth had to rush for Malaysia last night itself and the duo will look to recover quickly before starting their campaign on Wednesday in the main draw.
Set to be officially crowned the World No 1 on Thursday, Saina will start her campaign as a third seed against Indonesia's Maria Febe Kusumastuti in the opening round. However, the road to the podium will be tougher here as the top Chinese, including Li Xuerui and Wang Yihan, will be back in business and ready for the new World No 1.
Ready for challenges
"In last three months, I have reached three finals, which means I am learning. I am not taking any tournament easily. Every tournament is difficult and every one will be prepared for me and I will have to be ready everytime," Saina said.
On a roll with back-to-back titles, Srikanth, on the other hand, will face 2010 Commonwealth Games silver-medallist Rajiv Ouseph of England in the first round.
Among other Indians, HS Prannoy will be up against Ireland's World No 25 Scott Evans.
Commonwealth Games champion Parupalli Kashyap will be up against Korea's Lee Dong Keun in the first round.