Saturday, April 17, 2021

PV Sindhu, Kidambi Srikanth enter Malaysia Open semifinals

HYDERABAD, June 29: Kidambi Srikanth and PV Sindhu stormed into the semifinals of the Malaysia Open BWF World Tour Super 750 tournament in Bukit Jalil on Friday. While Srikanth had it easy against Brice Leverdez of France 21-19, 21-11, Sindhu survived anxious moments before prevailing over Carolina Marin of Spain 22-20, 21-19 in the quarterfinals.
In the 53-minute see-saw battle against the Olympic champion, Sindhu played brilliantly towards the end of the two games to trump the Spaniard. In the first game both players targeted each other’s backhand consistently. At one stage Sindhu was cruising ahead at 18-15 before Marin came up with a five-point burst to move to 20-18. When nothing looked like going in her favour, Sindhu challenged a line call despite knowing that the shuttle was well outside. This little interval helped Sindhu to break Marin’s momentum. A lucky netchord helped Sindhu to save a game point. At 19-20, Sindhu produced a breathtaking drop to draw level with her rival. Rattled by these unexpected reversals, Marin made mistakes allowing Sindhu to win the first game.
In the second game, Sindhu gained a big lead of 13-6 but Marin was in no mood to relent as she closed the gap to 14-15. When it looked like Marin is calling the shots, Sindhu came up with a deft crosscourt drop and followed that with another touch on the net to move to 19-15. Marin once again closed the margin to 19-20 but Sindhu won the all important rally at this stage.
The lanky shuttler will face the tricky world No.1 Tai Tzu Ying in the last four clash on Saturday. Tai enjoys a 8-3 career record against Sindhu. (TNN)