The women's doubles pair of Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand were the only Indians to make it to the quarterfinals of the All England Championships on Thursday. Last year's runner up Lakshya Sen, HS Prannoy and Kidambi Srikanth, as well as the seeded pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty all lost in the second round.
Treesa-Gayatri, who had reached the semifinals as reserves last year scripted a stunning win over higher-ranked opponents once again to progress to the quarterfinals. The youngsters played a brilliant match to beat the former world No. 1 pair of Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota 21-14, 24-22. It was a tense finish after they squandered a nine-point lead in the second, but held on to close it in straight games.
Treesa and Gayatri continued their good form from the Badminton Asia Mixed Team Championship and national championship in February. In their first match, they had knocked out the seventh seeds Jongkolphan Kitiiharakul and Rawinda Prajongai and the world No 17 pair will next play China's Li Wen Mei and Liu Xuan Xuan.
Lakshya, however, couldn't find his touch against Anders Antonsen, going down 13-21, 15-21 in 52 minutes. The Dane had gone down in straight games at the same stage to the Indian in 2022, where he was the third seed. He avenged that defeat with a comprehensive display, not letting the Indian find his rhythm. The second-round exit means Sen will lose ranking points and slip further in the BWF charts.
Returning from an injury, Satwik and his partner Chirag started strong but could not weather the fightback from the Chinese pair Liang Wei Keng and Wang Chang. They lost to the India Open champions with a 21-10, 17-21, 19-21.
Later in the day, HS Prannoy went down to world No 3 Anthony Ginting after a tough three-game battle, losing 20-22, 21-15, 17-21 while Kidambi Srikanth lost to World No. 6 Kodai Naraoka 17-21, 15-21.
With PTI Inputs