Former world No. 1 Kidambi Srikanth has pulled out of the German Open Super 300 badminton tournament which starts with the qualifiers here on Tuesday.
While Srikanth will be missing in action, finalist of the last edition, Lakshya Sen will hope to go the distance this time as he spearheads the Indian challenge.
Sen, and newly-crowned national champion Mithun Manjunath, will be the top Indian players.
Sen, the reigning Commonwealth Games gold medallist, had defeated wold No. 1 Viktor Axelsen in the semifinals, only to lose the final in the last edition.
This time the 21-year-old from Almora, seeded sixth, will meet France’s Christo Popov in the opening round and is expected to face top seed Malaysian Lee Zii Jia in the quarters, if he can cross the initial rounds.
“I might face Lee Zii Jia in quarterfinals, so looking forward to it. I have done everything in my hand to approach this week in best shape, so hope to get a good momentum ahead of All England,” Sen said.
Manjunath will be brimming with confidence after his maiden national crown and will look to carry the momentum when he opens against former world champion Loh Kean Yew.
Malvika Bansod and Saina Nehwal are also in the women’s singles draw, while the mixed doubles pairing of Ashwini Ponnappa and B Sumeeth Reddy, who had played at the 2022 CWG, are also in fray.