Li battles to reach Asia quarters

Top seed Li Xuerui of China was made to work hard to reach the women’s singles quarter-finals of the Dong Feng Citroen Asia Championships on Thursday in Wuhan, China.

Li spent 63 minutes on court to eventually get past Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi 21-16, 18-21, 21-19 to set up a quarter-final clash against eighth seed Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan, who defeated India’s Pusarla V. Sindhu 13-21, 22-20, 21-8 in 60 minutes.

In other women’s second-round matches, second seed Nozomi Okuhara of Japan hammered Korea Republic’s Bae Yeon Ju 21-5, 21-9 and in an upset unseeded Sayaka Sato of Japan defeated Thai fourth seed Ratchanok Intanon 17-21, 21-16, 21-17 in 63 minutes.

Seventh seed Sung Ji Hyun of Korea Republic downed Hong Kong’s Yip Pui Yin 21-15, 21-15 while Indian fifth seed Saina Nehwal beat Thailand’s Nitchaon Jindapol 21-14, 21-18.

China’s third seed Wang Shixian cruised past Taiwan’s Pai Yu Po 21-14, 21-15 and sixth seed Wang Yihan of China beat Singapore’s Xiaoyu Liang 21-13, 21-14.