All it took was 56 minutes for PV Sindhu to win the quarterfinal match against Akane Yamaguchi. The two have had a fair share of history as the head-to-head between the two was led by PV Sindhu. Things remained the same this time as well. After almost a half an hour delay, PV Sindhu's game against Akane Yamaguchi began and the Japanese shuttler took a couple of quick points. Sindhu made a stunning comeback and forced Yamaguchi to make errors. On one hand, where Yamaguchi attempted to not let Sindhu get an advantage of her height, the India shuttler got into an attacking mode. In the first 11 minutes, the match stood on 11-7 which the Indian shuttler leading the match. After the coaching break, Sindhu lost a point but made a quick comeback. 2020 Tokyo Olympics Live Updates Day 7.
Sindhu's strategy was simple, create beautiful angles, not let the opponent attack and smash. Soon that match moved to 13-8. But then Yamaguchi was not willing to give up so soon and the Japanese shuttler gained a couple of quick points. Long rallies witnessed Yamaguchi getting up every time she fell. But Sindhu kept on covering the court quite well. Her signature smashes kept on coming at regular intervals. Yamaguchi then slammed a cross-court smash which was challenged by Sindhu. The challenge went in favour of Sindhu and soon the scoreboard read 21-13 with Indian shuttler winning the game 1.
Sindhu avoided playing on the backline and this was something that went in her favour. The second game once again went neck to neck 3-3. A service error from Japanse and the Indian was leading the set 4-3. A cross-shot from Sindhu seemed to go out of the line and was called out. Sindhu challenged the decision and things went in favour of the Indian. Signature smash earned the India shuttler a point more. Just after the scoreboard read 12-7, Yamaguchi did try to seal the gap between the score lines, but PV Sindhu maintained her calm,
A cross-court shot from Sindhu which was called out was challenged by Sindhu. This time the challenge went unsuccessful and the Japanese earned a couple of quick points. The Japanese was just three points away from equalling Sindhu, but a drop shot that hit the net helped Sindhu extend the lead. The 54-shot rally between the two turned out to be the turning point and the two stalwarts once again came neck to neck. 16-16 read the scoreboard. Yamaguchi attempted to play long rallies to tire out the Indian shuttler. For the first time, the Japanese ace led the game 17-16. Her defences kept on getting better and better with time.
Sindhu was a couple of points behind, but the Indian shuttler was in no mood to give up so soon. A couple of smashes brought Sindhu to 20-20. Game point saved by the Indian. Sindhu left no stone unturned to win this fixture and in the end, had the last laugh as she won the match 22-20.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jul 30, 2021 02:52 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).