Saina Nehwal came from behind to defeat Indonesian Dinar Dyah Ayustine 17-21, 21-18, 21-12 to enter the quarter-finals of Macau Open Grand Prix Gold on Thursday.
Like in the first round, the top-seeded Saina was stretched to the third game by her younger rival and she had to summon all her experience to prevail. She will face China's Zhang Yiman in the last eight round.
World No. 11 Saina was given a major scare by Dinar, who is currently world No. 50. Saina started the match on a strong footing taking a decent lead in the first game. However, the 22-year-old Indonesian drew level at 13-13 and then took the game 21-17.
However, Dinar was not given a chance in the second game though she matched Saina till the halfway stage. In the third game, it was all about Saina as she romped home.
Saina is the lone Indian in the women's singles category after PV Sindhu pulled out of the tournament.
However, it was curtains for P Kashyap and men's doubles pair of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy.
Kashyap, who is on a comeback trail, put up a gallant fight before losing 13-21 20-22 to Lin Yu Hsien of Chinese Taipei in a 45-minute duel.
Third seeds Manu and Sumeeth also fought hard before going down 20-22 19-21 to Singapore's Danny Bawa Chrisnanta and Hendra Wijaya.
In the women's singles match, Saina blew a 11-7 lead in the opening game to see Ayustine move ahead and pocket the game. However, a determined Saina dished out a more dominating performance in the second game as she zoomed to a 11-3 lead at the break.
Ayustine slowly and steadily bridged the gap after interval and drew parity at 18-18 but the Indian ensured there was no hiccup as she bounced back into the contest.
In the decider, it was the Indonesian shuttler who held a slender 4-2 lead early on but Saina turned the tables at 5-5 and moved ahead, opening up a 11-8 lead at the interval.
Saina then reeled off four points to extend the lead and eventually sealed the match with another four-point burst.
(with inputs from PTI)