Wuhan (Chi), April 29: Indian star Sai Nehwal defeated World No.5 Shixian Wang of Chi to enter the women’s singles semi-fils at the Badminton Asia Championships here on Friday.
Fifth seeded Sai outsmarted third seeded Shixian 21-16, 21-19 in 56 minutes at the Wuhan Sports Centre.
With this win, 26-year-old Sai equalised 7-7 in career meetings against the 2010 World Championship bronze medallist.
The Olympic bronze medallist will now take on the winner of the match between Nozomi Okuhara of Japan and Yihan Wang of Chi.
In the opening game, Sai took a 3-0 lead but Shixian came back strongly to make it 17-16 in her favour.
But Sai again got hold of the advantage to take a four point lead. Then mistakes by the Chinese helped the Indian win the opening game.
In the second game, the Indian again had a 3-0 lead but her opponent came back well as Sai made a couple of unforced errors to help Shixian return to the contest.
From there on it was a see-saw battle between the two top shuttlers as no one wanted to give the game away.
It came down to 19-19 at the end. Next, two successive mistakes at the net by the Chinese led to Sai’s well-earned victory. IANS