The Indian challenge at the Denmark Open Superseries was salvaged by World No. 8 Kidambi Srikanth when he defeated world champion and local favourite Viktor Axelsen and advanced to the semi-final of the tournament on Friday. The Denmark shuttler dominated the first game completely but was sent on the back-foot by the Indian in the next two games. Srikanth won the match 14-21, 22-20, 21-7 in 55 minutes. The 24-year-old held his nerve and gave India something to celebrate.
In the other matches of the night, Saina Nehwal and HS Prannoy bowed out of the tournament in the women's singles and men's singles quarterfinals respectively on Friday. Nehwal, who pulled off a stunning victory by defeating Olympic gold-medalist Carolina Marin in the first round match, was completely outclassed by Akane Yamaguchi of Japan in just 29 minutes, Nehwal lost 10-21, 13-21.
Yamaguchi was the better player between the two as she dominated the proceedings with pure class and did not let her Indian counter-part settle in the game. By registering her win over Saina, defending champion Yamaguchi reached her second straight semi-final.
While, HS Prannoy's promising journey in the tournament was cut-short by top seed Son Wan Ho of Japan in just 44 minutes. The Indian lost 13-21, 18-21 in a one-sided affair. Prannoy tried coming back in the second game but couldn't counter Wan Ho's skills.
Earlier, Prannoy in his pre-quarters match, which lasted around an hour, pulled off a staggering victory over Malaysian legend Lee Chong Wei 21-17, 11-21, 21-19. The 25-year-old in the first round of the tournament beat Emil Holst of Canada 21-18, 21-19 in a match that lasted 48 minutes.
World number two PV Sindhu crashed out of the tournament losing 21-17, 23-21 to Chinese Chen Yufei in the first round of the Superseries itself.