Kumamoto (Japan), Nov 14: Asian Games champions Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy suffered a first-round exit in the Kumamoto Masters Japan 2023 men’s doubles badminton event on Tuesday.
The world no. 5 Indian duo lost to Chinese Taipei’s world No. 21 pair of Lu Ching Yao and Yang Po Han 21-16, 18-21, 16-21 in 63 minutes in the round of 32 of the Super 500 badminton tournament.
The Indian duo got off to a slow start and were trailing 0-3 after early exchanges. They made it 3-3 and led by four points at the interval. Lu Ching Yao and Yang Po Han cut the deficit to one point 17-16 but the Indians pocketed the first game with four successive points.
The second game turned out to be a neck-to-neck affair. However, the Taipei duo opened up a three-point lead at 9-6 and survived a fightback from Chirag Satwik to take the game, forcing a decider.
Both pairs engaged in longer rallies in the decider. The scores were level at 10-10 but the Taipei duo pulled off a few body smashes on the Indians, who committed some unforced errors that helped the Taipei pair take the match with ease.
HS Prannoy, Lakshya Sen and Priyanshu Rajawat will be in action on Wednesday.
Prannoy, seeded seventh, will be up against Lee Cheuk Yui of Hong Kong China in the opening round. Lakshya will take on third seed Kodai Naraoka of Japan while Priyanshu Rajawat will face Lin Chun-Yi of Chinese Taipei.
Results at the Kumamoto Masters Japan will count towards players’ qualifying rankings for the Paris 2024 Olympics.