Lucknow, Jan 24 (IANS) Olympic silver medallist P.V. Sindhu will be aiming to continue her dream run in the international badminton circuit, while Saina Nehwal, who recently clinched the Malaysia Masters Grand Prix Gold, has decided to skip the Syed Modi Grand Prix Gold which commences here on Wednesday.

Ever since Sindhu clinched the Olympic silver medal at the Rio Olympics in August, she is in rampaging form and will be a hot favourite to clinch the women’s singles title.

She had sealed her maiden Superseries title at China Open Premier, before reaching the finals at Hong Kong Open and qualifying for the prestigious Badminton World Federation (BWF) Dubai Superseries Finals in December last year.

Among others, second seed Beartiz Corrales of Spain, third seed Fitriani Fitriani, fourth seed Dinar Dyah Ayustine, fifth seed Hanna Ramadini of Indonesia and seventh seed Ksenia Polikarpova of Russia will battle for the title in women’s singles category.

Top seed Sindhu will take on compatriot Anura Prabhudesai in the opening round. She is expected to have a smooth sailing, especially given that World No.10 Saina has decided to give the tournament a miss.

Apart from Saina, several other prominent players will also skip the tournament. Men’s top seed Thai Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk, fourth seed Ajay Jayaram and 14th seed Parupalli Kashyap and women’s seventh seed G. Ruthvika Shivani have also pulled out.

In men’s singles category, third seed Kidambi Srikanth will take on compatriot Lakhanee Sarang in the opening round while second seed Hans-Kristian Vittinghus of Denmark will face unseeded Munawar Mohammed.

Among other Indians, H.S. Prannoy, Sameer Verma and B. Sai Praneeth will also take the field in the opening round on Wednesday.

In the women’s doubles category, Ashwini Ponnappa and Sikki Reddy will also aim to make their mark in the tournament as they face compatriots J. Anees Kowsar and Vaddepally Pramada in their campaign opener.

In the men’s doubles category, the pair of Mannu Attri and Sumeeth Reddy have been seeded third for the event and will face Yong Kai Terry Hee and Kean Hean Loh of Singapore.

    The IANS was founded by Indian American publisher Gopal Raju as the India Abroad News Service. It was later renamed the Indo-Asian News Service.

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