Saina Nehwal leads Awadhe Warriors to victory in Premier Badminton League

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Saina Nehwal still slowly recovering from her knee injury. (photo: PTI)

Lucknow: India’s London Olympics bronze medalist Saina Nehwal defeated Nitchaon Jindapol of Delhi Acers to register the second victory for Awadhe Warriors in the second edition of the Premier Badminton League that was held at the Babu Banarasi Das Indoor Stadium on Thursday.Saina Nehwal still slowly recovering from her knee injury. (photo: PTI)

Although she lost to Olympic champion Carolina Marin in the opener of the Premier Badminton League, the 26-year-old Nehwal had little trouble immediately finding her rhythm to outclass Jindapol 14-12, 11-7 in the women’s singles match that was chosen as Awadhe Warriors’ ‘Trump Match’.

Jindapol has held the upper hand against Nehwal in the first set, but she missed a drop shot to allow Nehwal to level the score at 12-12 before Nehwal finally rallied to claim the first set 14-12.

Nehwal then overcame a slow start in the second game to down Jindapol 11-7 after delivering a powerful forehand shot to win the set in 13 minutes.

“I love to play in Lucknow, I’m really excited to have a great win after long time,” said Nehwal.

Earlier in the opening match of the day, men’s doubles pair of Goh V Shem/Markis Kido needed only 15 minutes to provide Awadhe Warriors a 1-0 advantage.

In the first men’s singles match, Kidambi Srikanth of Awadhe Warriors trounced Jan O Jorgensen 11-9, 11-13, 11-9 before Savitree Amitrapai and Bodin Isara gave Awadhe Warriors an unassailable lead by beating Jwala Gutta and Vladimir Ivanov 12-10, 11-5.

Vincent Wong Wing Ki of Awadhe Warriors then completed the formality to down Son Wan Ho 11-8, 11-7 in Delhi Acers’ ‘Trump match’.

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