India’s PV Sindhu progressed to the semi-final of the All England Open badminton championship after defeating Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi 16-21, 21-16, 21-19 on Friday. Sindhu was stretched to her maximum capabilities by the Japanese Yamaguchi, whose cross-court smashes almost always found Sindhu on all fours, but the Indian persevered till the end and pulled off a great comeback after losing the first game. With rallies of more than 30 shots a norm through the match, both players were neck-to-neck in the third game even as Sindhu was seen struggling at times. But the Indian dug deep and clinched the match point.
Earlier on Friday, India’s Lakshya Sen was knocked out in the quarter-finals after losing to Netherlands’ Mark Caljouw. Lakshya lost the match 17-21, 21-16, 17-21 in 55 minutes.
On Thursday, Lakshya had became the youngest Indian to reach the quarter-final of the All England Open by defeating France’s Thomas Rouxel 21-18, 21- 17.
India’s women’s doubles pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and N Sikki Reddy also bowed out of the tournament after losing to Netherlands’ Selena Piek and Cheryl Seinen 22-24, 12-21 in the quarter-finals.
The men’s doubles pair of Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy were also eliminated from the tournament after they lost to Denmark’s Kim Astrup and Anders Skaarup 21-16, 11-21, 21-17 in the second round.
Sindhu had resigtered a comprehensive win over Denmark’s Line Christophersen in straight games to make the quarter-final on Thursday.
She had defeated Christophersen 21-8, 21-8 in just 25 minutes.
After her win in the quarter-final, Sindhu will now face Thailand’s 11th ranked 23-year-old Pornpawee Chochuwong on Saturday.
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