Defending champion PV Sindhu and Kidambi Srikanth stormed into the quarterfinals of the BWF World Championships with straight-game wins in their respective singles round of 16 matches here on Thursday. World number 7 Sindhu defeated Pornpawee Chochuwong of Thailand, ranked three places below her, 21-14 21-18 in the pre-quarterfinal match that lasted 48 minutes.
With the win, Sindhu, seeded sixth in the showpiece tournament, extended her head-to-head record against Chochuwong to 5-3. Sindhu also avenged her twin loss to Chochuwong this season -- group match of BWF World Tour Finals earlier this month and All England Championships in March.
The double Olympic medallist Sindhu faces top seed and world number one Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei, who beat Kirsty Gilmour of Scotland 21-10 19-21 21-11, in the quarterfinals. In the men's singles, 12th seed Srikanth outplayed unseeded Guang Zu Lu of China 21-10, 21-15 to enter the last eight. Indians, however, suffered defeats in both the women's and men's doubles in the pre-quarterfinals.
The women's doubles pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy lost 13-21 15-21 to the Thai duo of Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Rawinda Prajongjai. The men's doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty suffered a 20-22 21-18 15-21 defeat to Ong Yew Sin and Teo Ee Yi of Malaysia. Sindhu took an early 5-1 lead but Chochuwong rallied to narrow the gap to 5-4 and then to 10-9.
The Indian zoomed ahead from there on as she made it 15-10 and then 19-11 to pocket the first game. The second game was a tighter affair though Sindhu began on the front foot with a 3-0 lead. Sindhu led 11-6 at the change of ends and the second half saw some long rallies with the Thai player winning a few of them. Sindhu was leading 16-10 but Chochuwong made a comeback of sort as she reduced the gap to 18-15 and then to 19-18.
Sindhu won a crucial point after a long rally to make it 20-18 before winning the second game and the match. Sindhu, who got a first round bye, had beaten Slovakia's Martina Repiska 21-7 21-9 in the second round on Tuesday. Lakshya Sen and H S Prannoy are scheduled to play their round of 16 matches later on Thursday.