Indian shuttler HS Prannoy had his Malaysia Open campaign come to an end after he was overpowered by Kodai Naraoka of Japan in the quarterfinals on Friday.
Naraoka, who had earlier defeated Prannoy twice at the Singapore Open and World Tour Finals last year, has now gone 3-0 after clinching a 21-16, 19-21, 21-10 win over the Indian.
In an edgy encounter lasting three hours and eight minutes, world No. 8 Prannoy beat Lakshya Sen, ranked 10th, 22-24, 21-12, 21-18, on his way to the quarterfinals. Afterwards, Prannoy beat Indonesia’s Chico Aura Dwi Wardoyo 21-9 15-21 21-16.
A crisp winner and delicate touch at the net helped Prannoy recover from a reversal in the first game. In the decider, the Indian made several unforced errors, which led to his younger rival keeping things under control.
Naraoka, who knocked out home favourites Lee Zii Jia and Ng Tze Yong before the match, recovered everything that was thrown at him, keeping Prannoy on the back foot.
PV Sindhu, on the other hand, playing her first match since she suffered a stress fracture on her left ankle while en route to her Commonwealth Games gold in August last year, lost in 59 minutes to Marin of Spain in the women’s singles of Malaysia Open.