PV Sindhu, Sai Praneeth Enter World Championships Semi-Finals
PV Sindhu defeated Chinese Taipei shuttler Tai Tzu Ying 12-21, 23-21, 21-19 while Sai Praneeth edged past Indonesia's Jonatan Christie to enter the semi-finals.
PV Sindhu defeated Chinese Taipei shuttler Tai Tzu Ying 12-21, 23-21, 21-19 to enter the semi-finals at the BWF World Championships. In the women's singles semi-finals, PV Sindhu will face either Mia Blichfeldt or Chen Yufei, who play each other in the quarterfinals later in the day. India's P V Sindhu assured herself of a fifth medal at the BWF World Championships after reaching the semifinals with a come-from-behind win over Asian Games gold medallist Tai Tzu Ying on Friday. In men's single Sai Praneeth defeated Indonesia's Jonatan Christie in straight games to book his place in the semi-final of the world championships on Friday.
Sindhu, who won back-to-back silver medals in the last two editions of the prestigious tournament to go with two bronze, edged past former world no 1 Tzu Ying in a pulsating quarterfinals contest.
The 24-year-old, who is also an Olympic silver medallist, will take on China's Chen Yu Fei in the semifinal on Saturday.
On Thursday, Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth crashed out of the tournament as they lost their pre-quarter final games.
Sindhu lost the first game by nine points but in the second game, Sindhu showed better intent to open up a 2-0 lead before being tied 3-3. Tzu Ying's repertoire of strokes made life difficult for the Indian, who slipped to 5-8.
A gritty Sindhu, however, clawed back with three points - a cross court smash and two wide shots from Tzu Ying -- and then made it 11-9 at the break with the help of a precise forehand return.
Sindhu stepped ahead, but her opponent again equalised at 15-15, with another accurate return.
Another error on her backhand helped Tzu Ying gather a point but Sindhu neutralised with a powerful smash.
Sindhu unleashed another big smash and when Tzu Ying missed the lines, it gave the Indian a 18-16 lead. The Taiwanese drew parity before Sindhu grabbed two game points after Tzu Ying went wide. Sindhu miscued a return and then went wide to make it 20-20.
With Tzu Ying finding the net, Sindhu hung in but went wide to level the scores.
A superb service return handed Sindhu the advantage and this time, she sealed it with a cross court return, which Tzu Ying couldn't connect.
In the decider, Tzu Ying brought to the fore her deception once again and jumped to a 4-1 lead.
Tzu Ying displayed her superb technical skills to control the shuttle but Sindhu kept fighting to stay close. The Taiwanese led 8-4 at one stage and kept Sindhu guessing with her placements.
Sindhu narrowed the lead to 7-9 but another magic stroke near the net gave Tzu Ying a point. The Chinese Taipei player entered the interval with a two-point advantage after producing another masterful backhand return.
After the breather, Sindhu unleashed a lethal smash but Tzu Ying's angled returns kept the Indian on the hook. A good-looking return took Sindhu to 12-13 before Tzu Ying again regained the two-point cushion. Sindhu unleashed a body smash to draw parity at 14-14 and then grabbed a lead after her opponent made a judgement error.
The Indian maintained her one-point advantage at 18-17 when Tzu Ying committed two unforced errors and soon moved to 19-17, but the Taiwanese fought back when Sindhu found the net. A timely smash saw Sindhu grab one match point and she sealed it when Tzu Ying went wide.
(With PTI inputs)