Saina looks to All England with renewed vigour

Published Mar 3, 2014, 6:27 pm IST
Updated Mar 19, 2019, 10:37 am IST

Birmingham: Relieved after clinching a title following a year-long drought, Olympic bronze medallist Saina Nehwal will renew her dream of winning the All England crown when the USD 400,000 Super Series Premier tournament gets underway at the National Indoor Arena in Birmingham on Tuesday.

The only Indian to be seeded in the prestigious event, Saina will look to do one better after her semifinal finish at 2013 Championships, in which her campaign was cut shot by Thailand's Ratchanok Intanon.

After enduring a tough season, when she battled injuries and lack of form and could not win a single title, the World no. 7 Indian got her mojo back by winning the Syed Modi International GPG title in Lucknow in January. Saina, seeded seventh, has lost weight while preparing for the tournament and is confident of a good show as she opens her campaign against Kirsty Gilmour of Scotland.

It is going to be a tough road ahead for Saina as she is likely to face German Juliane Schenk and fourth seed Shixian Wang in the next two rounds, provided she clears the opening hurdle. Saina's younger colleague, P V Sindhu, too, is in the fray and will begin with a clash against Yu Sun of China.

The World Championship bronze medallist also has a very difficult task of taming second seed Chinese Yihan Wang in the next round.

In the men's singles, Parupalli Kashyap and Kidambi Srikanth got direct entry into the main draw, but the duo will face an uphill task as they open their campaign against Japanese fifth seeded Kenechi Tago and Kento Momota, respectively.

There are no other Indians currently in the main draws of the other three categories. Saina told PTI: "I am well prepared. I got a month to train for All England and we had a good session. I feel I am back to my best and confident of doing well."



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