Defending champions Parupalli Kashyap and Sayali Gokhale entered the quarterfinals of the 78th ATS Senior National Badminton Championship with contrasting wins at the Siri Fort Sports Complex here on Saturday.
Kashyap defeated Shubhankar Dey 21-14, 21-13 in a pre-quarterfinal match to set up a clash with HS Prannoy, who beat Abhimanyu Singh 21-14 21-10 in another match.
Sayali and pre-tournament favourite P V Sindhu stayed on course for a summit clash fter both the players registered easy victories to reach the women's singles quarterfinals.
Sayali and Sindhu faced each other in the last edition of the Senior Nationals in Srinagar with the former taking the crown after a gruelling encounter.
Placed in the top half, seventh seed Sayali took some time to get used to the playing style of former junior national champion Ruth Misha of Karnataka but once the Air India shuttler managed to pocket the first game she easily sailed through to a 21-19, 21-6 victory.
She will now face 13th seed Aarthi Sara Sunil of Kerala, who defeated Assam's Bornali Konwar 21-13, 21-9.
In the bottom half, Sindhu looked to be in a hurry to go back to the warmth of her hotel room as she demolished 9th seed Mudra Dhainje 21-3, 21-7 in just 23 minutes to set up a quarterfinal clash against 5th seed P C Thulasi.
Thulasi also sailed through the last eight with a 21-7, 21-5 win over 10th seed Jacqueline Rose Kunnath.
Sayali was happy with her performance against Ruth Misha but said she was not looking far ahead.
"I know Saina (Nehwal) has withdrawn and that has opened up the top half. But there are quite a few good players and I will like to concentrate on one match at a time," she said.
Important Results (pre-quarters):
Women's singles: 13-Aarti Sara Sunil bt Bornali Konwar 21-13, 21-9; 7-Sayali Gokhale bt Ruth Misha V 21-19, 21-6; 4-Tanvi Lad bt 12-Mohita Sahdev 21-8, 21-8; 5-PC Thulasi bt 10-Jacqueline Rose Kunnath 21-7, 21-5; 3-Arundhati Pantawane bt 14-Neha Pandit 21-16, 21-14; 2-P V Sindhu bt 9-Mudra Dahinje 21-3, 21-7
Men's singles: 1-P Kashyap bt 11-Shubhankar Dey 21-14, 21-13; 7-HS Prannoy bt 14-Abhimanyu Singh 21-14, 21-10.