Sayaka Sato has her revenge for Indonesia Open loss to Saina
Incheon (Korea): Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa were the only Indians remaining at the Korea Open Premier Super Series at the end of the second round on Thursday. Jwala and Ashwini took nearly an hour to quell the challenge of Japan’s Mizuki Fujii and Reika Kakiiwa and enter the quarterfinals, but fourth seeded Indian Saina Nehwal unexpectedly fell to the unseeded Japanese Sayaka Sato, whom she had beaten in the final of the Indonesia Open Super Series last year. Sato beat the Indian 17-21 21-19 21-11 in 53 minutes.
The other Indians to bite the dust were Parupalli Kashyap and the mixed doubles pair of Diju V and Jwala Gutta. While Kashyap was packed off by third seed Peter Gade of Denmark, 21-16 21-13, Diju and Jwala were unlucky to run into the Chinese combination of Tao Jiaming/ Qing Tian. The Indians fell 21-16 21-13.
Saina Nehwal won the first game rather easily, but the second was a struggle. The two were toe-to-toe until 18-all, and the Japanese suddenly pushed ahead to equal the match at one game all. In the third, Saina was decimated as Sato shot from 7-all and was a comfortable winner at 21-11.
Meanwhile, China’s fourth seed Chen Long was beaten by Kenichi Tago of Japan. Tago won 20-22 23-21 21-16. The other upset of the day was world champion Chen Jin, who fell to young compatriot Wang Zhengming. All the other favoured players, including Lin Dan, Taufik Hidayat and Lee Chong Wei, progressed into the quarterfinals. Jwala and Ashwini will take on China’s Qing Tian/ Zhao Yunlei in the quarters.