Indian badminton queen Pusarla V. Sindhu displayed a superlative performance in the BWF World Badminton Championships 2018 semi-finals to beat Akane Yamaguchi of Japan in straight sets to enter the finals of the tournament.
The Indian star defeated Akane Yamaguchi by 21-16, 24-22 in a match that lasted for 55 minutes & by virtue of this win, she will meet Olympic Champion Carolina Marin in the Gold medal playoff.
Spain’s Marin ousted sixth seed He Bingjiao of China in a three match thriller 13-21, 21-16, 21-13 to book her place in the BWF World Championship Finals against India’s Sindhu.
The 3rd seed Indian had an impressive head-to-head record of 6-4 before the match but Yamaguchi came into the match from the fact that she had beaten Sindhu 19-21, 21-19, 21-18 in their last outing at the All England Open in March this year.
The Indian shuttler started slow in the match and was trailing early in the first game as Yamaguchi looked in fine touch after winning four straight points to begin the first set. However, Sindhu got back impressively and drew the things level back at 9-9, but Yamaguchi maintained a slender two-point lead by 11-9 before going to the break.
Some brilliant smashes turned the things to Sindhu’s way as she got to the lead at 13-12 for the very first time and some beautiful cross-court shots from the Indian helped her wrap the first game 21-16 against her Japanese counterpart.
In the second game, Yamaguchi burst into a four-point lead as she led the Indian 8-4 initially. The World No.3 tried getting back in the game with occasional points but the Japanese had other plans as they led Sindhu 11-8 at mid-break of the second game.
After the break, Yamaguchi looked in rush to wrap up the game and got to a big lead by 19-12 but Sindhu pulled her rank and drew level at 19-19 by winning seven consecutive points.
After that, the game was evenly poised as both the players were neck-and-neck throughout the remaining of the game. But it was the Indian who held her nerves and took the match away from her Japanese opponent by 21-16, 24-22 to reach the finals of BWF World Badminton Championship.