India’s women’s doubles pair of Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa started their campaign with a dominating straight-game win in the opening round of the Bitburger Open Grand Prix Gold in Saarbrucken, Germany.
The Commonwealth Games gold-medallist pair brushed aside Germany’s Anika Dorr and Annika Horbach 21-14 21-11 in a 23-minute match on Wednesday night.
Bronze-medallist at the 2011 London World Championship, Jwala and Ashwini rode on their powerful smashes and better net play to annihilate Anika and Annika.
They will next take on fourth-seeded Malaysian pair of Hui Ern Ng and Hui Lin Ng in the next round.
However, it was curtains for P.C. Thulasi in the women’s singles competition when the Indian lost her battle against sixth seed Sashina Vignes Waran of France 21-18 14-21 14-21 in a match that lasted 54 minutes.
Jwala and Ashwini, who started playing together again after a gap of one year during the French Open, were in control of the match and never allowed their rivals to post much of a challenge.
After an initial fight which lasted for just the first five points, Jwala and Ashwini broke off and kept extending the lead as they moved from 8-5 to 14-9 and then 18-11, before closing the opening game.
In the second game, Jwala and Ashwini surged ahead from 6-6 to 11-6 and then kept their nose ahead as their rivals crumbled.
Yesterday, Indian shuttler Anand Pawar defeated Erik Meijs of Netherlands to enter the third round of the men’s singles competition.
Fifth seeded Pawar got the better of Meijs 21-12 21-14.