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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.

Updated
Olympic Sports
3 min read
<div class="paragraphs"><p>PV Sindhu reaches the semi-final</p></div>
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Snapshot
  • 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.

<div class="paragraphs"><p> Japan's Akane Yamaguchi plays against India's Pusarla V. Sindhu during their women's singles badminton quarterfinal match at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, July 30, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.</p></div>

Japan's Akane Yamaguchi plays against India's Pusarla V. Sindhu during their women's singles badminton quarterfinal match at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, July 30, 2021, in Tokyo, Japan.

(Photo: PTI)

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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.

<div class="paragraphs"><p>Tokyo: India's Pusarla V. Sindhu plays against Japan's Akane Yamaguchi during their women's singles badminton quarterfinal match at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, July 30,</p></div>

Tokyo: India's Pusarla V. Sindhu plays against Japan's Akane Yamaguchi during their women's singles badminton quarterfinal match at the 2020 Summer Olympics, Friday, July 30,

(Photo: PTI)

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.

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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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