India’s double Olympic medalist PV Sindhu failed to reach the women’s singles top match after battling Japan’s Sayaka Takahashi in three matches at the French Badminton Open here on Saturday.
The 26-year-old from Hyderabad missed a one-game advantage to lose 21-18 16-21 12-21 against world number 15 Takahashi, the 2013 and 2014 Asian Championship bronze medalist. This was her fourth defeat to the Japanese-year-old 29 years in eight encounters.
Sendo, the world champion, lost in the quarter-finals at last week’s Denmark Open in Odense.
The world number 7 Indian started the match on a positive note as there wasn’t much to separate the two. The duo played short rallies, trying to deceive each other with their offensive shots.
Going by the neck and neck from 5-5 to 9-9 in the opening game, Takahashi fired a powerful shot that hit Al Sindh’s cheeks, taking a 10-9 lead, but the Indian recovered to equalize the results with a shot across the field. The Japanese had a slight advantage by one point at the break.
After the second half, the Sind managed to erase a two-point lead with a diagonal comeback before snatching a one-point lead after winning the 27-shot Rally. Takahashi took advantage of Sindh’s weak backhand to reclaim the lead. She added another point with a lucky chord but the Indian unleashed three consecutive shots to make it 17-16.
A miscalculation on the court and two net errors from Takahashi earned Sindh four points per game. The Indian missed two of them before slamming a winner in the first match.
After changing ends, Sindhu continued her momentum, leading 5-2 early. However, Takahashi made her way back up at 6-6, with Sindh advancing broadly. The Indian showed a great defense as she sent one over Takahashi in the defensive line and then fired a powerful shot to take a 9-6 lead, her nose ahead in the first half.
However, the left Japanese came back in front at 13-12 after the break, with Sindhu committing a string of fouls. At 13-15, Sindhu hit another smash but her backhand hit again suddenly, Takahashi jumped to the 18-14 lead.
Sindhu attacked her opponent’s forehand but delivered a powerful and ordinary kick to snatch four points in the match and lock it up when the Indian went away.
The decision-maker started with the same intensity that led the duo with a score of 6-6, but Takahashi began to control the course of the match and quickly gained an 11-6 advantage in the first half, as the Sindh went into the net and led the Japanese to defeat. smash the line.
Despite coach Park Tae-sang’s spirited talk in the first half, things didn’t improve for Sendo as Takahashi mounted her attack to easily collect points, as she led 14-9.
The Japanese put the points well and closed them with offensive responses on both sides. With Sindhu unable to rein in her mistakes, Takahashi grabbed a massive nine-point match points.
The Indian saved one before the Japanese sent one down the line to close the doors on their imaginary rival. This is Sindhu’s second tournament since returning to the courts after a break after her campaign in the Tokyo Olympics, where she claimed a bronze medal, five years after winning the silver at the Rio Games.