Rediff.com  » Sports » Olympics Badminton: Sindhu breezes through in opener

Olympics Badminton: Sindhu breezes through in opener

Last updated on: July 25, 2021 09:05 IST
Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

India's Pusarla V. Sindhu in action during her women's singles group match against Israel's Ksenia Polikarpova at the Tokyo Olympics on Sunday.

IMAGE: India's Pusarla V. Sindhu in action during her women's singles group match against Israel's Ksenia Polikarpova at the Tokyo Olympics on Sunday. Photograph: Lintao Zhang/Getty Images

Indian badminton ace Pusarla V Sindhu began her campaign at the Tokyo Olympics with an easy 21-7, 21-10 victory over Israel's Ksenia Polikarpova in her first singles group match on Sunday.

The women's singles World champion was too good for the 58-ranked Israeli, winning in just 28 minutes, at the Musashino Forest Sport Plaza.

 

The 2016 Rio Olympics silver medallist, ranked No. 7, will play Hong Kong's world No. 34 Cheung Ngan Yi in her next group stage match.

"It was quite an easy match," said Sindu, adding that she knows she has the hopes of a billion people behind her.

"Tokyo is a fresh start. You can't expect to be Superman, to think that you will again be a medallist. It's not like that because everybody is going to be at their top form,"she added.

Sindhu started on an attacking note but briefly found herself trailing 3-4. However, she moved ahead quickly, as Polikarpova committed unforced errors, and entered the break with a 11-5 lead.

Soon Sindhu was on a roll, grabbing 13 straight points. She used her trademark straight and cross-court smashes and drops to trouble the Israeli, who was unable utilise the few opportunities that came her way. She wrapped up the first game when Polikarpova missed a return.

Polikarpova, who was playing with a strapped knee, continued to struggle with her strokes as Sindhu opened up a 9-3 lead in the second game and then entered the mid-break with a massive seven-point advantage.

It was business as usual after the break as Sindhu rode on the errors of her opponent.

Another wide shot from Polikarpova gave Sindhu 13 match-points. She squandered three of them before Polikarpova again sent the shuttle out to end the match.

On Saturday, the Indian men's doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty shocked the world number 3vduo of Yang Lee and Chi-Lin Wang of Chinese Taipei in a thrilling group A match.

However, B Sai Praneeth jeopardised his qualification to the knock-out stage after going down to world No. 47 Misha Zilberman of Israel in his men's singles Group D match.

Get Rediff News in your Inbox:

https://www.rediff.com/cricket/ipl-2021