Indian men's doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty suffered an opening-round exit in the China Open Super 1000 after losing to Muhammad Shohibul Fikro and Maulana Bagas of Indonesia on Wednesday at Changzhou Olympic Sports Centre's Xincheng Gymnasium.
With Satwik and Chirag's exit, the Indian challenge at the year's fourth and final Super 1000 event came to an end. No Indian could progress to the second round.
The Indian pair, currently ranked second in the world, lost to the world number 13 Indonesian duo of Fikri and Maulana 17-21, 21-11, 17-21 in a match that lasted for 68 minutes.
This is the second time the Indonesians have beaten Satwik and Chirag this year. They had defeated the Indian duo in the pre-quarterfinals of the Thailand Open in June.
The loss in the first round ahead of the forthcoming Asian Games, scheduled to start on September 23 in China, is a huge disappointment for Satwik and Chirag. At the BWF World Championships in late August, Satwik and Chirag lost in the quarterfinals. Wednesday's loss also meant the Indians' wait for the ascendancy to the top rank in the BWF World Rankings got longer.
Satwik and Chirag won four titles in 2023: Swiss Open Super 300, Badminton Asia Championships, Korea Open Super 500, and the Indonesia Open Super 1000.
Earlier today, the Indian mixed doubles pair of N Sikki Reddy and Rohan Kapoor also crashed out of the tournament, going down to the Malaysian duo of Chen Tang Jie and Toh Ee Wei 15-21, 16-21 in the first round.
On Tuesday, World Championships bronze medalist HS Prannoy suffered a shocking first round exit after losing to Malaysia's Ng Tze Yong in a three-setter. Commonwealth Games champion Lakshya Sen also lost a three-setter against Anders Antonsen of Denmark. Priyanshu Rajawat, the third Indian men's singles player in contention, lost in straight games to Shesar Hiren Rhustavito of Indonesia.
Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand in women's doubles and MR Arjun and Dhruva Kapila in men's doubles also suffered first round exits.