Commanding Victory For PV Sindhu, Beats Fourth Seed Yamaguchi in Straight Games
Tokyo Olympics: PV Sindhu is now just one win away from bagging her second Olympics medal.
PV Sindhu beat Akane Yamaguchi 21-13, 22-20 to ender the semi-final of the women's singles event at the Tokyo Olympics.
She will next face second seed Tai Tzu-Ying at 3:20pm IST on Saturday, 31 July.
Tai Tzu leads the pair's head-to-head at 13-5.
World champion PV Sindhu has progressed to the semi-final of the Tokyo Olympics for a second straight time.
The sixth seed defeated home girl Akane Yamaguchi 21-13, 22-20 to storm into the final four stage of the tournament.
The highlight of the match was Sindhu's inch-perfect judgement as Yamaguchi had herself to blame for the errors. The Indian star alternated between a smash and the drop shot as her weapons and bagged the match in straight sets.
Both the players warmed up and were neck and neck at the start with the score reading 6-6 in the first game. The 12th point of the match was a long rally and Sindhu owned it with a smash to gain some early momentum. Post the point, the Indian raced to 11-7 at the interval as she answered Akane's backhand with lethal crosscourt smashes.
Sindhu then extended her lead to 17-11. A long rally when the score read 19-13 was decided with Sindhu challenging the umpire's decision and was given the game point. She finished off the game and got the 1-0 lead in 23 minutes.
The 2016 Rio Olympics silver medallist started the second game with a smash and the game was close with a score at 5-4. Yamaguchi continues to make the errors and Sindhu's smashes meant that she was in a comfortable lead of 10-5.
At the interval, Sindhu was leading 11-6 as both the players moved terrifically across the court. The world champion had a 14-8 lead and just when Yamaguchi looked to make a comeback, Sindhu ameliorated her quality of her gameplay and changed gears to dominate the match.
But Yamaguchi did stage a comeback last in the second game. She started playing long rallies and won 8 out of the next 9 points to get a slender one-point lead. At 16-15, the Japanese was dominating the game as Sindhu was visibly tired and the match looked like it may go into a third game.
The Japanese had 3 game points and had staged a world-class comeback but Sindhu wouldn't given up either. She saved 3 game points and inched closer to victory.
She bagged the game in 30 minutes and booked a place in the semi-final.
Sindhu will now lock horns with the Chinese Taipei's Tai Tzu-Zing who beat Ratchanok Itanon 14-21, 21-18, 21-18 in their quarter-final on Friday.
Tai Tzu leads the head-to-head against Sindhu at 13-5 having lost to the Indian star last in 2019, at the World Championships.
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