Basel, March 16 (IANS) Defending champion H.S. Prannoy kept his title defence on track by defeating Scotland’s Kieran Merrrilees in straight games to enter the third round of the men’s singles competition at the Swiss Grand Prix Gold badminton tournament here on Thursday.

The fifth-seeded Prannoy beat Merrrilees 21-17, 21-19 in a 43-minute encounter. He will now face 10th seed Qiao Bin of China in the next round.

Among other Indians in the fray, Subhankar Dey and the mixed doubles team of Pranaav Jerry Chopra and N Sikki Reddy also enjoyed a positive outing as they advanced to the next rounds of their respective categories.

Subhankar defeated Iztok Utrosa of Slovenia 21-17, 21-18 and will now meet Japan’s Kanta Tsuneyama in the third round.

The fourth-seeded duo of Pranaav and Sikki reached the pre-quarterfinals of the mixed doubles event after Nico Ruponen and Amanda Hogstrom of Sweden handed them a walkover.

However, it was curtains for Sameer Verma, who went down 21-16, 15-21, 13-21 to Tsuneyama in one hour and six minutes.

In the men’s doubles category, Manu Attri and B. Sumeeth Reddy lost 15-21, 19-21 top seeds Chai Biao and Hong Wei of China.

In the women’s doubles, Sanjana Santosh and Arathi Sara Sunil were defeated 15-21, 15-21 by the German duo of Johanna Goliszewski and Lara Kaepplein.

The mixed doubles pair of Rohan Kapoor and Sanjana also crashed out after going down 16-21, 19-21 to Bastian Kersaudy and Lea Palermo of France.

Krishna Priya Kudaravalli also saw her campaign come to an end in the women’s singles section following a 18-21, 8-21 loss to seventh-seed Fitriani Fitriani of Indonesia.

    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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