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Saturday, Dec 14, 2019

Sizzling Saina sails into 2nd round

Saina Nehwal beats her Russia's Ella Karachkova in straight games to storm into the 2nd round of the women's singles event of the badminton contest.

india Updated: Aug 10, 2008 09:00 IST
Amlan Chakraborty
Amlan Chakraborty

Ace Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal toyed with her Russian opponent Ella Karachkova before thrashing her in straight games to storm into the second round of the women's singles event of the badminton competition at the Beijing Olympics in Beijing on Saturday.

The national champion looked in sublime form as she needed less than half an hour to oust Karachkova 21-9 21-8 to breeze into the second round where Ukrainian Larysa Gryga awaits her.

In a gross lop-sided match, Saina showed her bag of tricks that had her Russian rival in all sort of troubles and the Indian later said she did not go full throttle because she wanted to try some different things today.

"I did not play my usual game and hit less smash. Instead, I was trying more drop shots. The first round match is always tough because you tend to make mistakes early but I'm happy that everything went according to the script," she said.

Asked about how she felt here, Saina said, "I think I adjusted fast to the court, conditions, breeze and atmosphere here. It was wonderful playing in front of such a vociferous crowd."

The Hyderabadi shuttler also sought to dismiss notion that she had an easy draw in the competition.

"This is simply not correct. If I manage to clear the next round, I'll possibly face world number three player (Chen Wang of Hong Kong). So it's not an easy draw as some believe," she said.

Even that challenge, however, does not intimidate Saina who said she never felt any pressure.

"No question about getting nervy, that's simply not me. I have beaten senior and higher ranked players in the past and I know I'll give 100 percent and there is no reason why I cannot do it here again," she asserted.