Saina Nehwal’s quest for Olympic qualification received a big jolt when the star shuttler was forced to quit her opening round match against Denmark’s Mia Blichfeldt in the All England Open Badminton in Birmingham on Thursday. (More Sports News)
It turned out to be a struggle for the Nehwal on her 31st birthday as she trailed her opponent Blichfeldt losing the first game 21-8.
She was trailing 10-4 in the the second game when she decided to quit due to pain. The shuttler seems to have injured her right thigh.
Nehwal has had a difficult year so far. She has struggled for form and was defeated in the second round at Yonex Thailand Open in January and couldn’t get past the opening round at the Toyota Thailand Open.
Earlier, world champion P V Sindhu made an impressive start at the All England Badminton Championships but compatriots Kidambi Srikanth and Parupalli Kashyap suffered early exits after losing their respective opening round men's singles matches here on Wednesday.
The Indian women's duo of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy and men's doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty also progressed to the second round with straight game wins.