India face 10-time champions China in the quarter-final of 2017 Sudirman Cup in Gold Coast, Australia on Friday.
The ninth seeds progressed to the knockout stages of the tournament for the first time since 2011 when they defeated Indonesia in their final Group 1D tie on Tuesday. Despite losing to Denmark 4-1 on Monday, a 4-1 win over the former champions made sure India finished second in the group.
On the other hand, China defeated Hong Kong 4-1 before decimating Thailand 5-0 to storm in the quarter-final round by virtue of topping Group 1A.
India will be high on confidence after pulling out a stunning win over Indonesia in the group stages. However, even their best might not be enough to stop China, who have headed to Gold Coast with a power-packed team, which includes world number nine Lin Dan among other top-ranked stars in both their singles and doubles units.
Can Srikanth beat Lin again?
The onus to earn a point will be on India's PV Sindhu as she is likely to face lower-ranked Sun Yu, against whom she has a 3-4 head-to-head record. In the Men's singles rubber, world number 15 Kidambi Srikanth faces the daunting task of going up against Lin. The in-form shuttler, who finished as runner-up as last month's Singapore Superseries, though should take confidence from his 2014 China Open win over the two-time Olympic champion before he take court on Friday.
Stiff test for India's doubles teams
Indian doubles teams though will have to punch above their weight if they are to stand a chance against their Chinese counterparts. India's top-ranked Women's doubles pairing of Ashwini Ponnappa and Sikki Reddy pulled out an emphatic win against Indonesia in their last group tie. However, they will be facing world number the world number four duo of Chen Qingchen and Jia Yifan, who are favourites to win the rubber.
China once again have the edge over India in the Men's doubles rubber as world number three Li Junhui and Liu Yuchen are unlikely to be troubled by Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy. In the Mixed doubles rubber though, India's Ponnappa and Rankireddy will be confident of facing their Chinese opponents after having triggered Indonesia's collapse on Tuesday.
Possible line-up: Kidambi Srikanth (MS), PV Sindhu (WS), Chirag Shetty/Satwiksairaj Rankireddy (MD), Ashwini Ponnappa/Sikki Reddy (WD), Satwiksairaj/Ponnappa (XD)
Possible line-up: Lin Dan (MS), Sun Yu (WS), Li Junhui/Liu Yuchen (MD), Chen Qingchen/Jia Yifan (WD), Lu Kai/Huang Yaqiong (XD)