Saina bows out, Praneeth advances to final in Thailand

Thailand Open Sai Praneeth Sourabh Verma cruise into third round

Thailand Open Sai Praneeth Sourabh Verma cruise into third round

Star shuttler Saina Nehwal on Friday Stormed into Semi-finals Of Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold 2017 after defeating Japan's Haruko Suzuki in Bangkok.

The world number 24 will now take on fourth seed Jonathan Christie - who registered 21-9, 21-18 win over Malaysia's Joo Ven Soong in the other semi-final match - in the summit clash on Sunday.

Praneeth yesterday clinched an easy 21-16, 21-17 triumph over Kantaphon Wangcharoen of Thailand in a quarter-final clash that lasted 50 minutes.

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The first game saw no trouble for the third seed and expected it was another win to his name. While the first game was pocketed fast by the Indian, the Thai came back strong in the second to keep just a point's difference at the interval. But Praneeth closed the gap and reduced the deficit to one point at the break.

In the women's semi-final, Saina was made to do all the running in the initial stages against Busanan as the latter raced to a 3-0 lead. From there on, he did not let his Thai opponent make a recovery and won the game comfortably. In the women's singles, Saina dominated the opening game handsomely before the World No. 132 Haruko bounced back quite well to take the second game 22-20 and level the game by 1-1.

By then, Saina had found her rhythm and her range as she started calling the shots to race to a 11-8 advantage. It was neck and neck for a while after that as both players won points consistently.

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