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Indian challenge ends after Lakshya Sen bows out in semis

Lakshya Sen.. Image Source: IANS News

Council Bluffs : , July 16 (IANS) India’s challenge at US Open 2023 badminton tournament came to an end after Lakshya Sen lost in the men’s singles semi-finals, here.

Lakshya, currently ranked 12th in the BWF badminton rankings, lost 17-21, 24-22, 17-21 to Li Shi Feng of China in the semifinals of the the BWF Super 300 tournament on Saturday night.

Competing on the badminton courts of the Mid-America Centre, Lakshya was slow off the blocks early on as world No. 7 Li Shi Feng raced to a 15-9 lead. The Indian shuttler tried to mount a comeback but couldn’t stop Feng from taking the lead.

The second game was a closely-fought affair with both Commonwealth Games 2022 champion Sen and reigning All England champion Li Shi Feng going toe-to-toe.

With the scores tied at 11-all, the Indian unleashed a series of smashes in an attempt to seize control of the match but the Chinese shuttler defended well to stay in the game. The Indian shuttler raised his game in the nervy final exchanges and took the match into the decider.

However, Lakshya failed to carry the momentum into the third game as he trailed Li Shi Feng by a 14-8 margin. The Indian badminton player recovered to reduce the gap to 17-15 but couldn’t stop Li Shi Feng from winning the 76-minute marathon affair.

Despite the defeat, Lakshya holds a 5-4 head-to-head record over Li Shi Feng. The Indian beat Li Shi Feng in the final of the Canada Open last week.

Indian shuttlers will be in action next at the Korea Open, which is scheduled from July 18 to 23.

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