show to crash out of the Malaysian Open Superseries Premier quarter-finals here on Friday.
World No.8 Saina suffered a 19-21 defeat in the first game against No.22 Porntip Buranaprasertsuk at the Malawati Stadium.
But the third seeded Indian fought back in style, winning the next two games with comparative ease 21-14, 21-14.
It was the 26-year-old’s ninth win in 10 meetings against the Thai shuttler.
However, double World Championship bronze medallist P.V. Sindhu crashed out against former world champion Ratchanok Intanon. The fourth seeded Thai took just 29 minutes to crush Sindhu 21-7, 21-18.
With this win, world No.4 Ratchanok, who last week won the Indian Open, took a 4-1 lead in career meetings over No.10 Sindhu.
In another women’s singles quarter-final, Chinese Taipei’s Tai Tzu Ying battled past fifth seed Shixian Wang of China 21-14, 21-14 in 37 minutes.
Tai, the 2013 edition champion here, will battle with 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Saina for a place in the final. Tai leads the head-to-head record against the Indian star 8-5 and more importantly, has won the previous five consecutive meetings.
In the final quarter-final, Chinese sixth seed Yihan Wang brushed aside reigning world champion and top seed Carolina Marin of Spain, 21-13, 21-15 in 37 minutes.
In the men’s singles competition, Danish fifth seed Jan O Jorgensen handed out a 21-17, 21-4 thrashing to Chinese legend Lin Dan.
Chinese top seed Chen Long beat compatriot Tian Houwei 21-16, 21-16. In the semi-final. Defending champion Long will face Indonesian qualifier Christie Jonatan, who got the better of Englishman Rajiv Ouseph 21-19, 21-19.