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Asian Games 2018: Sindhu through to Singles finals, Saina wins Bronze

Asian Games 2018: Sindhu through to Singles finals, Saina wins Bronze

Akshat Mehrish

Updated: 30 July 2021 4:24 PM GMT
The 2018 Asian Games have now crossed over to the final week. As a result, many of the disciplines are now in their final stages, as they make room for new ones. The first-half of the Games has been good for India, while not being exceptional. While the Indian medal tally has been provided with a boost by some non-mainstream sports, the more popular ones have disappointed. Badminton was one of those 'popular' sports which disappointed in the early days as many of the competitors crashed out. And while the level of competition in this sport was very high, the Indian team had raised expectations after their stellar performance at the Commonwealth Games. Over the past seven days, the country saw many of its favourites get eliminates. Srikanth, Prannoy, Rankireddy, Ponappa, Shetty, and others failed to deliver on the big stage. However, two women kept on going strong and ended the competition on a high note. Saina Nehwal and PV Sindhu both ended their Asiad journey with a medal each. Over the bast decade, we have seen Saina Nehwal defy the odds and become one of the best players in the world. The Indian shuttler has delivered on a consistent basis throughout. She did so again, by winning the Bronze medal at the 2018 Asian Games. The Indian shuttler was unseeded at this year's tournament but flew through the early stages without dropping a game. In the Quarters, Nehwal came up against Ratchanok Intanon and beat hear 21-18, 21-16. In the Semifinal, however, Nehwal took on top seed Tai Tzu-Ying. The Chinese Taipei shuttler proved to be too much for Nehwal, beating her 21-17, 21-14. Nevertheless, the Indian won the Bronze medal and re-asserted her greatness. The Indian has now won a medal at the Olympics, the Commonwealth Games, and the Asiad. The second Indian in action, in the Badminton semifinals was PV Sindhu. Sindhu did not enjoy the best of fortunes in this calendar year. The Indian shuttler lost in both the CWG and the World Championship final and ended up with the Silver medal. Many questioned the Indian's ability to perform in the big games and whether the youngster is past her best. Nevertheless, Sindhu proved them wrong by going on a medal-winning run in the eighteenth Asian Games. There was an early scare for Sindhu, as she lost her very first game in the competition against Vietnam's Vu. The Indian, however, recovered from the early shock, to beat Vu two games to one. Sindhu then went on a stunning run that saw her beat the like of Tunjung and Jindapol to enter the Semifinals. In the Semis, Sindhu faced second-seed Akane Yamaguchi. Already assured of a Bronze, the Indian took the first game 21-17. However, Sindhu's higher ranked opponent fought back in the second game and levelled the match. It finally took a spirited performance by the Indian in the third game to claim a victory in the Semifinal. She defeated Yamaguchi by 21-17, 15-21, 21-10. Sindhu's win means that the Indian will now claim either the Asiad Silver or Gold, a feat achieved by no Indian shuttler before her. On a day, which turned out to be Indian Badminton's last stand at the 2018 Asian Games, Saina and Sindhu once again proved why they are two of the best sportspersons the country has ever produced.
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