Guangzhou, Dec 16:
Continuing her sizzling form, Indian badminton star P V Sindhu progressed to the summit clash of the World Tour Finals for the second successive time but it was curtains for debutante Sameer Verma in men’s singles here Saturday.
The 23-year-old Indian, who finished runner-up at the last edition, staved off a strong challenge from the fighting Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand, a 2013 world champion, to emerge a 21-16, 25-23 winner in a tense semifinal that clocked 54 minutes.
Sameer, however, had to swallow a bitter pill after squandering a match point advantage in the second game to go down 21-12, 20-22, 17-21 to All England Champion and World Championship silver medallist Shi Yuqi of China in the men’s singles semifinals.
Sindhu came into the match with a 3-4 record against the Thai player but she was buoyed by her recent results as she has not lost to Intanon in the last two years.
The Olympic silver medallist will now fight for the title with Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara, to whom she had lost an epic World Championship final, last year.
“I was leading by 2-3 points but she took a lead in the end and I was making simple errors and I was nervous but I managed to be patient and fought for each point and finished on top,” Sindhu said.
I have improved I believe. I am comparatively stronger now because earlier I used to keep thinking after losing points.” “It is going to be a long match. It is never easy as we know each others game and on the day we have to strategies and play our game. There has always been long rallies and we have to be patience.
World No 6 Sindhu has lost a lot of major finals, including the Rio Olympics, two World Championships in 2017 and 2018 and the Jakarta Asian Games, to settle for silvers in the last two years.