New Delhi: Indian badminton sensation PV Sindhu beat Nozomi Okuhara of Japan in straight games to enter the final of the women`s singles event at Rio Olympics 2016 on Thursday.
The 21-year-old Indian registered a 21-19, 21-10 win over her higher ranked Japanese opponent in 49 minutes, in front of a vocal Indian crowd.
In the process, the Hyderabad girl became the first ever Indian to reach final of a badminton event in Olympics. She will now play world number Carolina Marin of Spain, who early today beat defending champion Xuerui Li of China in straight games in the first semi-final, in tomorrow's final.
Her emphatic win over the world number sixth meant that India will have two medals inside 24 hours after 11 days of medal hunt in the Rio Games.
Yesterday, Sakshi Malik won medal women's 58 kg freestyle category.
For Sindhu, who was on a giant-killing spree after dismissing two higher-ranked opponents – Chinese Taipei`s Tai Tzu Ying and World No. 2 Wang Yihan of China in the pre-quarter-final and the quarter-final respectively – today`s win was only the continuation of her good form.
The first game of the second semi-final was a close contest, with both players going head-to-head until the Indian shuttler took a decisive double point lead for the game point.
Sindhu won the game 21-19 in 27 minutes.
The second game started on a familiar note. but after 10-10, Sindhu won the next 11 points on the trot to set up a dream final with equally attack minded Marin.
The match witnessed Sindhu playing, probably, one of her best games in a while with smashes and deceptive drop shots giving her good results.
The limited reach of the 155cm-tall Japanese opponent also allowed Sindhu to play an all-out attacking game, with frequent smashes and cross court plays.
But, it was also her confidence which paid rich dividends. In the 49 minutes of play, Sindhu never looked out of touch even though couple of deliberate leaves went against her.