Indian badminton sensation PV Sindhu beat Nozomi Okuhara of Japan in straight games to enter the final of the Women's singles competition on Thursday. She will play Spain's world number one Carolina Marin in the final.
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Sindhu 21 - 10 Okuhara: Brilliant! PV Sindhu won the match with a clean smash, into Okuhara's body. From 10-10, Sindhu won eleven points on the trot.
Sindhu 20 - 10 Okuhara: Similar play, and Okuhara crumbled. Match point came soon, pretty soon for Sindhu.
Sindhu 18 - 10 Okuhara: Another open court and another cross court finish from Sindhu.
Sindhu raced to 8 points lead.
Sindhu 15 - 10 Okuhara: Another beautifully set-up point for Sindhu. Forced Okuhara to hustle, thus leaving behind the whole court. A smash to kill off.
Another point for a five point lead.
Sindhu 13 - 10 Okuhara: An ambitious shot gone awfully short of it's destination. Crashed into the net. Then another point for Sindhu. Three points lead.
Sindhu 11 - 10 Okuhara: Perfection. Clean play from Sindhu, into the far corner, for one point lead. Time-out.
Sindhu 10 - 10 Okuhara: A long relay finished with Sindhu playing into the net.
Sindhu 9 - 9 Okuhara: Another deceptive drop play from Sindhu, surely, taking her height advantage. But it was followed by an unforced error in the net.
Sindhu 8 - 8 Okuhara: Sindhu hurried into a smash and shuttle crashed into the nets. But, Sindhu killed off a short relay with a smashing smash.
Sindhu 6 - 7 Okuhara: Two points to the Japanese girl. First one, a smash in the third court; the second one a bad play from the India, who missed the line.
Sindhu responded with a strong smash, on the left court.
Sindhu 5 - 5 Okuhara: A lucky net call allowed Sindhu to break the flow. It was followed by a smash kill.
Sindhu 3 - 5 Okuhara: Out of the world. Japanese gairl, despite her limited reach, is retrieving very well. Then, took the lead. Then, doubled it with an unforced error from the Indian girl.
Sindhu 3 - 1 Okuhara: Finally, a forced error from the Indian. Long. She was going nuke, trying all the tricks in the relay.
Sindhu 3 - 0 Okuhara: Another point for Sindhu, an open court to kill off the relay.
Sindhu 2 - 0 Okuhara: Good start from Sindhu. Brilliant pick from the Indian, and equally impressive placing.
Sindhu 21 - 19 Okuhara: An ambitious smash from the 155cm tall Japanese and it crashed into the nets. Game to India.
Sindhu 20 - 19 Okuhara: Another long relay, and Sindhu failed to cover the court.
Sindhu 20 - 18 Okuhara: Sindhu just missed the reach, and point to Okuhara. But a tricky net play from the Japanese girl failed, and game point to India.
Sindhu 19 - 17 Okuhara: A smash into the body and Sindhu failed to cross the net. But a brilliant service return from Sindhu meant the Indian shuttler is now in the brink of winning the first game.
Sindhu 18 - 15 Okuhara: A missed smash from Okuhara arrived as a gift to Sindhu. But she failed to capitalise, giving away an easy point.
But she did what's needed. Taking the game to her opponent.
Sindhu 16 - 13 Okuhara: After gicing away two points, Sindhu responded with a strong point. Timed well to play the shot, and finished it with perfection
Okuraha responded well, winning the next point. But Sindhu out-thought her opponent with yet another drop point.
Sindhu 14 - 10 Okuhara: Two points in succession for Sindhu, first a result of her placing, then the second, thanks to an unforced error.
Sindhu 12 - 10 Okuhara: It was followed by a challenge from Okuhara for a long call. Seemed light the flight of the shuttle caught Sindhu's skirt, but upon review, it was shown that the shuttle actually landed on the line.
Another point to the Japanese shuttler from a weak defence from Sindhu on the net.
Sindhu 12 - 9 Okuhara: Another brilliant drop shot from the Indian shuttler. Forced her opponent to come forward, only to see the shuttle dropping beyond retrieval.
Sindhu 11 - 8 Okuhara: Into the nets. A hurried shot from Sindhu meant the shuttle crashing into the net. It allowed her rival to stall the progression. Back-to-back points to Okuhara.
TIME-OUT Called by Japanese Camp.
Sindhu 11 - 6 Okuhara: Floored! Literally, that's what Sindhu did to her rival with a well-judged smash shot. Okuhara, in a bid to retrieve, dived to her left but lost her footing. Another point and five points advantage.
Sindhu 9 - 6 Okuhara: High loft from Sindhu allowed Okuhara to play a smash shot, and landed. Another unforced error from the Indian. Crashed into the net. It was followed by a long relay, which evidently, shown Sindhu's brilliance. A drop shot at the forehand net. And point for Sindhu.
Sindhu 8 - 4 Okuhara: Sindhu, then, unleashed a ferocious smash on the left court. It was followed by a neat drop shot, a winner. Then, another drop shot from the Indian girl.
Sindhu 5 - 4 Okuhara: Risky leave from Sindhu. High serve from the Japanese shuttler and it caught the line even as Sindhu left it. An exchange followed.
Sindhu 4 - 2 Okuhara: It was followed by subtle back flick and point no 4 for Sindhu. Okuhara responded with a long relay point.
Sindhu 3 - 1 Okuhara: Two quick points for Sindhu as the Indian shuttler took control, but a long call, which Sindhu asked for review. And it caught the line by a hairline.
Sindhu 0 - 1 Okuhara: Sindhu serves first, and the first point to Okuhara with a cross court smash.
20:32 PM IST: Traditional bow from the Japanese shuttler before she gets into the court for the match.
20:30 PM IST: Players are already out, Giving final fine tuning, warming up! And there's loud support for the Indian shuttler.
COMING UP! Sindhu vs Nozomi
20:22 PM IST: Ten match points for Great Britain, and an ace, no service fault. Challenge from the British pair. And it comes right for them. Bronze to Great Britain.
20:10 PM IST: Men's Doubles Bronze medal match has become a one-way traffic in the third game with Britain pair leading 12-4.
19:59 PM IST: Chinese pair of Biao Chai and Wei Hao won the second game, 21-19, to force a decider against Marcus Ellis and Chris Langridge of Great Britain. And that means, PV Sindhu's match is further delayed.
Meanwhile, Saina Nehwal admitted to Hyderabad Hospital. Here's the report.
19:40 PM IST: The Men's Doubles Bronze medal match at show court is getting interested. Great Britain won the first game, but China have taken a lead in the all-important second game.
19:30 PM IST: Marcus Ellis and Chris Langridge of Great Britain have taken the first game, 21-18.
19:25 PM IST: Babita Kumari lost to Maria Prevolaraki 1-5. But the Indian wrester is not yet out of medal bracket. If Maria makes final, then Babita will get a repechage crack tomorrow.
19:15 PM IST: Meanwhile, Babita Kumari vs Maria Prevolaraki of Greece in women's freestyle 53kg Rd of 16 bout has started.
READ: Meanwhile, know everything about Sindhu's semi-final opponent!
19:00 PM IST: Sindhu vs Nozomi clash will be after Men's Doubles Bronze medal match, Biao Chai and Wei Hong of China against Marcus Ellis and Chris Langridge of Great Britain.
Next up: PV Sindhu vs Nozomi Okuhara, for a place to play Carolina Marin in the final.
18:51 PM IST: And Marin makes her maiden Olympics singles final, beating defending champion in straight games, 21-14, 21-16 in 55 minutes.
18:50 PM IST: Match on. Strapped Xuerui continues, and so thus Carolina Marin with her shouting. Match point 20-16.
18:48 PM IST: Anxious moments! It seems, Xuerui's coach wants the match to end, even as Chinese doctors hustle for medical attention.
18:45 PM IST: Awkward fall for Xuerui. Getting medical attention.
18:43 PM IST: Marin continues her attacking game, now leads 17-15.
18:40 PM IST: Then, Marin wrests back the initiative from her Chinese opponent, now leads 15-14.
18:35 PM IST: As expected, fight coming on from defending champion from China. Xuerui has managed to take a double point lead going into half way mark in the second game, which she must win to keep her title defence alive.
Sindhu vs Okuhara: Here are the key facts ahead of the match:
PV Sindhu (IND)
World Rank: 10
Style: Attacking game, with height advantage
Nozomi Okuhara (JPN)
World Rank: 6
Style: Retrieving, very tenatious
Played 4: Nozomi Okuhara 3, PV Sindhu 1; latest this February
18:15 PM IST: Marin has taken the first game 21-14 against the London gold medallist, in 22 minutes. Brilliant play from the confident Spaniard.
18:00 PM IST: The first semi-final in women's singles competition already underway between world number one Carolina Marin of Spain and Li Xuerui of China.
New Delhi: PV Sindhu will play the biggest badminton match of her career later in the day.
After emerging victorious against China's World No.2 Wang Yihan, the Hyderbad girl earned herself a date with Nozomi Okuhara.
The Japanese girl is ranked 6th, four places above Sindhu.
The winner of this contest will take on the either world no.1 Carolina Marin of Spain or Chinese world no. 3 Li Xuerui.
Indian fans will be hoping that Sakshi Malik's bronze medal win will serve as great confidence booster for Sindhu.
The 21-year-old has not won against Okuhara since 2012. Hence she will have to be at her very best to carve out a favorable result.
Date: August 18, Thursday
Time: 7:30 pm IST
TV listing: Star Sports network
Live streaming: Hotstar