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BWF World Championships 2023: HS Prannoy Upsets World No. 1 Viktor Axelsen in Quarterfinals, Secures Medal for India

In the semifinals, Prannoy will face Thailand's Kunlavut Vitidsarn. Prannoy fought through three games in the quarterfinal match, defeating the Olympic champion with a score of 13-21, 21-15, 21-16 in 68 minutes. This victory secured Prannoy's first-ever medal at the World Championships.

By Team Pardaphash 
Updated Date

Indian badminton star HS Prannoy delivered a remarkable performance in the quarterfinals of the men’s singles event at the BWF World Championships 2023, stunning the world’s top-ranked player, Victor Axelsen. The intense match, held on Friday, August 25, saw Prannoy secure a well-deserved victory, ensuring a medal for India in a display of exceptional skill and determination.

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Ranked 9th globally, Prannoy faced an initial setback as he lost the first set by a margin of eight points. However, he demonstrated unwavering resilience and turned the tide in his favor with an impressive comeback of 21-13, 15-21, 16-21. Prannoy’s triumph was particularly significant considering Axelsen’s status as the reigning champion and Olympic gold medalist.

Prannoy, competing in his third consecutive quarterfinals at the World Championships, had a challenging start against Axelsen’s aggressive return serves and swift shots. Despite a formidable performance by Axelsen in the opening set, Prannoy rallied in the subsequent games. He exhibited a mix of aggression and precision, attempting daring shots while maintaining a strong defense against Axelsen’s attempts to break him in the third set. Prannoy’s exceptional form shone through as he secured the final set with a score of 16-21, earning him a spot in the semifinals.

Expressing his elation after the match, Prannoy revealed that he had completely immersed himself in the game, tuning out distractions to stay focused. “Ohh yes! I finally have a worlds medal,” exclaimed Prannoy upon defeating Axelsen. “I just zoned out, the only thing under my control is me. I was actually not thinking anything else today, just thinking what to do to take the next five points. A lot of thinking I was doing inside but was not aware what was happening around. I was pretty much in my zone after the second game.”

At 31 years old, Prannoy emerged as India’s sole contender for a medal in this year’s World Championships after a surprising loss in the men’s doubles quarterfinal involving the star pair Satwiksairaj and Chirag Shetty. Prannoy is now set to face Thailand’s Kunlavut Vitidsarn in the semifinal round scheduled for Saturday, August 26.

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