Ace shuttler H.S Prannoy kept India’s hopes alive at the Indonesia Open 2022 by reaching the men’s singles semifinals with a convincing win over Denmark’s Rasmus Gemke in the quarterfinals at the Istoria Stadium, here on Friday.
Prannoy, the only Indian still alive in the BWF Super 1000 event, beat Gemke 21-14, 21-12, to set up a semifinal clash against China’s Zhao Junpeng, who beat Hong Kong shuttler Cheuk Yiu Lee in his final-eight clash.
Going into the tie, both players had two victories each in their last two head-to-head meetings.
It was H.S Prannoy, 23rd in the world badminton rankings, who dominated the early exchanges against his Danish opponent, whose mobility seemed to have been limited by an injury.
The Indian began with six back-to-back points before Gemke, the world No. 13, could register himself on the scoreboard. The Dane produced some eye-catching shots in the second half of the opening game but the early momentum was enough to see Prannoy through.
Gemke, who had upset world No. 2 Kento Momota in the opening round of the Indonesia Open, put on a much-improved display early in the second game but Prannoy continued to work his angles well to keep his nose ahead.
With the Dane fading away from the match after the break, Prannoy wrapped up the affair in 40 minutes after taking the final eight points on a trot. The Indian never lost his lead throughout the contest.
Olympic champion Viktor Axelsen of Denmark and Lee Zii Jia of Malaysia, a former All England Champion, will square off in’the other men’s singles semifinal.
India’s top draws like P.V Sindhu, Lakshya Sen and Kidambi Srikanth had earlier made first-round exits from the Indonesia Open 2022.