Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth played out of his skin before going down against Olympic champion Chen Long of China in the pre-quarterfinals, drawing curtains on India’s campaign at the German Open Grand Prix Gold in Mülheim an der Ruhr.
The 12th seeded Indian lost 19-21 20-22 in a 47-minute men’s singles match here last night.
Kidambi Srikanth, on a comeback trail after recovering from an ankle injury, blew 12-6 and 16-12 leads in the two games to go down against the second seed, who is also a two-time World champion and All England champion.
In the second round, Subhankar Dey suffered a 14-21 8-21 loss to fifth seed NG Ka Long Angus of Hong Kong, while Harshit Aggarwal lost 15-21 11-21 to eighth seed Hu Yun of Hong Kong.
In the opening game, Srikanth had opened up a 3-0 lead early on and jumped to a 12-6 healthy lead at one stage but Chen fought back to slowly recover his lost ground and turned the tables with a four-point burst to reach a 19-17 lead.
The Indian grabbed two points but Chen earned the next two points to pocket the first game.
In the second game, Chen moved ahead 9-5 but Srikanth reeled off seven straight points to grab the lead. He kept his nose ahead till 16-12 when the Chinese marched ahead with a six-point burst and despite some desperate attempts by Srikanth, Chen had the last laugh.