French Open Super series: Saina Nehwal exits in 2nd round
Paris : Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal suffered a loss in the second round of the French Open World Superseries here on Thursday.
London Olympics bronze medallist Saina lost to Japanese fifth seed Akane Yamaguchi 9-21, 21-23 in 39 minutes.
It was 20-year-old Yamaguchi's third consecutive win over 27-year-old Saina, who still leads the Japanese 3-1 in head-to-head records.
Yamaguchi completely dominated Saina in the first match after opening up a 13-7 lead before winning it 21-9.
Saina, however, fought valiantly in the second game. Yamaguchi started again strongly, holding a 7-3 lead. Saina kept trailing before managing to equalise at the 19-point mark before taking a 20-19 lead.
However, the 2017 Asian Championships silver medallist quickly hit back and pulled level at the 20-point mark and took a 21-20 lead.
Saina once again kept herself in the reckoning, equalising at 21-21. But Yamaguchi stepped up her game to seal it 23-21.