Kidambi Srikanth is the lone Indian survivor in the ongoing Denmark Open Super Series Premier men's singles competition after HS Prannoy and Parupalli Kashyap lost their respective first round singles clash. Srikanth, who defeated fellow Indian, Ajay Jayaram in the first round, will face Indonesian Tommy Sugiarto in the second round on Thursday.
Both the players come into their second round clash after defeating their first round opponents with relative ease. Srikanth defeated Jayaram, 21-10 and 21-14, while Sugiarto emerged triumphant against Japan's Sho Sasaki 21-11 and 21-12.
Srikanth looked in complete control against Jayaram from both ends of the court, while the same can be said for Sugiarto as well against Sasaki.
These two players have met twice in their career so far and have won one match each, however, Srikanth defeated Sugiarto in their last clash during the World Superseries finals in Dubai in straight sets, 21-18 and 21-13.
Their second round clash on Thursday will be their first meeting during the year.
If the fifth seed Indian comes up with his normal aggressive game, Sugiarto might find it tough to tackle the Indian. Srikanth possesses an all round game with a compact defense and solid aggression.
Even Peter Gade, badminton great from Denmark, was all praise for Srikanth.
"It's not so often you see players like him, because everyone strives to be a complete player and has the 'defense' part of their game that's visible. Not to say his defense is bad, but Srikanth thrives in this on-court personality of someone who has that killer-like aggression in his game," Indian Express quoted Peter Gade as saying.
Such words from a former champion should egg the fifth seed to go all out in the competition, which includes some top players such as Lin Dan, Chen Long, Jan O Jorgensen. Srikanth has his work cut out in the competition as he could meet second seed and home favourite Jorgensen (if Srikanth defeats Sugiarto) in the quatrter finals, which is going to be a humongous task.
Where to watch live
Kidambi Srikanth vs Tommy Sugiarto match starts at 11:45am local time* (3:15pm IST), There is no live TV coverage of Kidambi Srikanth vs Tommy Sugiarto match in India.
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*Expected start time could change as per the duration of other matches.