Kaula Lampur: Ace Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal suffered a major blow as she crashed out of the ongoing Malaysia Open badminton championships after going down in straight games to second-seed Akane Yamaguchi of Japan here on Thursday.
The 28-year-old failed to capitalize on her opening-match win and slumped to a 15-21,13-21 defeat at the hands of Yamaguchi in a second-round clash that lasted 36 minutes.
London Olympic bronze-medallist Nehwal had earlier kicked off her tournament with a comfortable 21-12, 21-16 win over Hong Kong’s YIP Pui Yin in a one-sided opening round that lasted 42 minutes.
In other matches of the day, Rio Olympic silver-medallist PV Sindhu and star shuttler Kidambi Srikanth will aim to book their place in the quarter-finals when they play their respective last-16 matches later today.
Sindhu will shuttle it out against local girl Lee Ying Ying in pre-quarterfinal match of the women’s singles event, while Srikanth will lock horns with Taiwan’s Wang Tzu-wei for a place in last-eight.