India ace Kidambi Srikanth struggled past Spain’s Pablo Abian in a three-game match to enter the men’s singles pre-quarterfinals at the BWF World Championship here on Wednesday.
The fifth seeded Indian recovered from a slump during the hard-fought contest to see off Pablo 21-15 12-21 21-14 in a second-round match that lasted 62 minutes.
Srikanth, who had clinched four titles last year, will lock horns with Malaysia’s Daren Liew, a former world no 10, who had won the 2012 French Open Super Series.
Srikanth erased a 2-4 and 6-8 deficit in the opening game before gaining upper hand with a 16-13 lead. He then reeled off four points to reach game points. Pablo tried to recover but the Indian quickly pocketed the opening game.
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In the second game, Srikanth had opened up a 6-3 lead but Pablo rode on a six-point burst to move ahead.
The Indian made it 10-12 but the Spaniard registered seven straight points to enjoy a healthy lead to eventually roar back into contest.
In the decider, Pablo managed a slender 11-9 advantage at the break but Srikanth turned the tables and then surged ahead to shut the door on the Spaniard.
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