Kidambi Srikanth, who might have started the season on a bright note winning titles, has gone cold for some time now. However, fifth seed Srikanth is India's biggest bet in the men's competition in the Denmark Open, which is scheduled to start on Wednesday.
First up Srikanth will meet fellow Indian Ajay Jayaram, who has shown some great form in the competition of late reaching the Korea Open finals and winning the Dutch Open. The match could prove to be an interesting one as they have met twice in their career and Srikanth has emerged victorious on both the counts.
However, Jayaram, who is in an amazing form, knows that this is his best chance to beat the top Indian shuttler. Jayaram definitely has the confidence and more importantly the game to dump Srikanth in the first round.
One has witnessed Jayaram posses some deft touches at the net and amazing aggression as well when required. But Srikanth will not be perturbed by his skills as the fifth seed is fully aware that he will be able to defeat Jayaram if he can play his relaxed and normal game and not give many chances to his opponent.
In fact, Srikanth might be looking to go all the way in the competition, which includes some top shuttlers and hence it not going to be easy. The fifth seed could meet second seed, Denmark's Jan O Jorgensen in the quarter finals. The Dane is one of the favourites for the competition.
Talking about leading contenders, India's Parupalli Kashyap will meet former world champion, Lee Chong Wei, who is another major favourite in the competition. Amongst all the first round matches, this match up between Kashyap and Lee Chong Wei is the most mouth-watering as both the players love having a go at one another from the back end of the court.
Badminton fans in Denmark must be waiting for this game in particular with interest.
Lee is favourite to progress in the second round, but one cannot write off Kashyap easily as he possess a good game, which could bring down world class players to their knees.
After an embarrassing exit from the Korea Open in the first round of the men's qualification draw, Lee Chong will be eager to start the competition with a big win over Kashyap, which will also send warning signs to the rest of the competitors in the Denmark Open.
The Malaysian might not have faced Kashyap of late, but Lee Chong, who has an incredible head-to-head record of 6-0, will want to remain undefeated against the Indian.
Where to follow live
Kidambi Srikanth vs Ajay Jayaram match starts at 3pm local time* (6:30pm IST), while Parupalli Kashyap vs Lee Chong Wei match is scheduled for 4:30pm local time* (8pm IST) start. There is no live TV coverage in India.
Click here for all the live score updates.
*Expected start time could change as per the duration of other matches.