All England Open 2017 hosts a strong Indian contingent with the three Big S of Indian Badminton making another effort to become the third Indian after Pullela Gopichand (2001) and Prakash Padukone (1980) to win a title at All England Open. Gopichand won in 2001. Since then Saina has entered three semifinals, and one final but failed to lift the title. This year Saina will be joined by super star Sindhu and Super series open champion Srikanth too. Although there ranking is lower, but their achievements match the superstars of world and India would feel positive about a good performance in 2017 England Open. Since Saina’s arrival at London in 2007, only Parupalli Kashyap is the other player to have reached till quarterfinal once in 2013. Sindhu, Srikanth and others have not moved beyond 2nd Round in multiple attempts. With some good wins already registered, can Indians add another title in 2017? Here is the schedule of Qualification and Main round for Indians in the England Open starting from March 7.
Qualification: March 7
MS Sourabh Verma vs 4th seed Ginting (Indonesia)
3rd seed Sameer Verma vs Kazumasa Sakai (Japan)
Sameer Verma leads 1-0 after winning at Hong Kong Open 2016
WD Ashwini Ponnappa / Sikki Reddy vs Lauren Smith / Sarah Walker (England)
Main Round: March 8
1.30 p.m. WD Jakkampudi Meghana / Poorvisha S Ram vs Chinese Taipei pair
4.50 p.m. MS HS Prannoy vs Qiao Bin (China)
4.50 p.m. MD Manu Attri / Sumeeth Reddy vs Q4
6.30 p.m. MS Ajay Jayaram vs Huang Yuxiang (China)
9.10 p.m. MS Kidambi Srikanth vs Q1
9.30 p.m. WS 8th seed Saina Nehwal vs Nozomi Okuhara (Japan)
9.50 p.m. WS 6th seed PV Sindhu vs Mette Poulseri (Denmark)
11.30 p.m. XD Pranaav Jerry Chopra / Sikki Reddy vs Korean pair
Career Meet vs Opponents
While others meet their opponents for the first time, some have played before too and Saina has got the toughest first round among Indians as her first match is against the defending champion.
Prannoy leads 2-1 in career meet winning at Macau Open 2015 and recent Hong Kong Open 2016. He lost their second match playing at China Open 2016.
Jayaram leads 3-0 winning at Canada Open 2015, Korea Open 2016 and Hong Kong Open 2016.
Saina leads 5–1 winning at Malaysia Open 2013, China Open 2013, Badminton Asia Championships 2015, China Open 2015 and their last meeting at Thomas & Uber Cup Finals 2016. Saina lost in their 5th meeting at Dubai World Superseries Finals 2015.