All England Open: Sindhu, Parnnoy to battle it out for semis place


"I just thought I should not give up, each point was important for me and I am happy that I fought back and won the match", said Sindhu. "But then I calmed down from thereon and that allowed me to win points continuously". Sindhu looks to play short rallies against Okuhara, who is known for her impeccable defensive play and thus is prone to making unforced errors. "So they tell me 'let it be its over.' I have been practising that and I think I am getting better", she added.

"Till the last point, I fought and finally won 21-18".

Unfortunate today after every two points in crucial points we had service faults. She had a grand total of 2 errors in net exchanges - she can win a net dribble in her sleep, such is her accuracy. In the quarters, Sindhu overcame reigning world champion Nozomi Okuhara of Japan. She clinches the point and the lead too. Six minutes into the game, Sindhu would be sitting pretty on a 11-5 lead.

In the decider game, it was neck and neck till the end but at 18-18 Sindhu took three straight points to wrap up the issue. She leads 8-5.

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At the break, Okuhara held a one point lead after Sindhu went wide again. The sheer relentlessness of Yamaguchi's attack broke Sindhu's resolve, as the Japanese sealed the game 21-18 and the match with a smash down the line.

Yamaguchi is not giving away- Sindhu loses a challenge but she still leads 17-13.

Seventh-seeded Okuhara used long tosses and clears and cross court drops to make Sindhu run around the court.

In scenes similar to the one that went down to the wire in the summit clash of last year's Dubai Superseries Final, both Sindhu and Yamaguchi threw themselves on the court, traversing diagonally again and again during a series of punishing rallies, which defined the edge-of-the-seat thriller.

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The World No. 3 Indian, however, said quick recover will be the key tomorrow as she has played three three-game matches in the last three days. The final score was 20-22, 21-18, 21-18.

Later in the day, the 16th-ranked Prannoy took 38 minutes to beat Sugiarto 21-10, 21-19 in the second round.

But on Saturday at the Arena Birmingham, Sindhu took off brilliantly, taking a 6-0 lead in the first game. This was the ninth victory on the trot for the 20-year-old Japanese, who had won the German Open early this month.

The second game turned out to be an edge-of-the-seat thriller as nothing separated the two till the break when Huang had a slender 11-10 lead. Sindhu then closed out the net and sent Okuhara to the corners with her acute returns to reel off four points to level par.

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