India's HS Prannoy faced stiff resistance before beating Malaysia's Daren Liew in the first round of the Malaysia Open on Tuesday. His compatriots Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty beat Wei Chong Man and Kai Wun Tee to also advance into the second round. Prannoy beat Liew 21-14, 17-21, 21-18 in 62 minutes while the doubles pair won in more straightforward fashion 21-18, 21-11 in 32 minutes. Prannoy will face fourth seeded Chou Tien Chen of Chinese Taipei next at the Super 750 badminton tournament.
B Sai Praneeth and Sameer Verma, meanwhile made early exits. Praneeth lost to world number six Anthony Sinisuka Ginting, Sameer lost to world number 8 Jonatan Christie
The 30-year-old Praneeth, currently ranked world number 19, lost 15-21 21-19 9-21 to Ginting in a 50-minute men's single match. Sameer, who is making a comeback from injury, lost 14-21 21-13 7-21.
In doubles, women's pairing of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy also exited the tournament after losing 15-21 11-21 to Japanese duo of Nami Matsuyama and Chiharu Shida, seeded sixth.
Meanwhile, in the headline match for the Indian camp, Prannoy was slow off the mark but opened up a healthy 11-7 lead at the break His accuracy, Liew's profligacy saw him close the game pretty quickly. After the change of sides, Liew took a 7-4 advantage, before a series of errors late in the game saw him forcing a deciding third game.
In the decider, Prannoy moved up 6-3 but Liew again clawed his way back with three points, including a sensational rally which left Prannoy sprawling on the court in a vain attempt to get an incredible angled drop. The second half of the decider was a roller-coaster ride as Liew kept pace with Prannoy but the Indian powered away at the end, a trademark smash winning him the match.