Wednesday 18 May 2022
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Sindhu cruises to pre-quarters in Tokyo Olympics

Sindhu used her repertoire of strokes, and her ability to vary the pace troubled the Hong Kong player, making her run around the court

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PV Sindhu wrapped her second and final match of her group at Tokyo Olympics in 35 minutes with a straight-game victory over Hong Kong’s Cheung Ngan Yi, booking a place in the pre-quarters at The Games.

Sindhu made easy work of her Hong Kong opponent, cruising to a 21-9 win in the first game. Ngan Yi showed more fight in the second game but Sindhu got the better of her, beating the Hong Kong shuttler 21-16 to cruise to pre-quarters.

World No.7 Sindhu will meet Denmark’s world number 12 Mia Blichfeldt, who topped Group I. Sindhu has a 4-1 head-to-head record against Blichfeldt, whose only win against the Indian was at the Yonex Thailand Open earlier this year.

The shuttler from Hyderabad, seeded sixth, had defeated Ksenia Polikarpova of Israel in her opening match.

Sindhu used her repertoire of strokes, and her ability to vary the pace troubled the Hong Kong player, making her run around the court. The Indian will then come up with a perfect placement.

Cheung got a few points with her deceptive cross court returns but she committed many unforced errors to have any chance of putting pressure on the Indian.

Sindhu led 6-2 early on before galloping to 10-3. She committed a rare error before entering the interval at 11-5. The Indian didn’t have any trouble after resumption as she zoomed to 20-9 and pocketed the opening game when Cheung netted a return.

Cheung was looking to script an incredible turnaround in the second game as she extended the rallies and with Sindhu too struggling to control the shuttle, the duo moved 6-6 and 8-8.

Sindhu made judgement errors before sending the shuttle wide again to hand over a slender one point advantage to her opponent.

Cheung tried to put pressure on Sindhu but the Indian wriggled out with her better strokeplay which included a few straight down the line smashes.

Sindhu moved to 19-14 before grabbing six match points but she missed the lines again and netted a shot to squander two match points before sealing it with a smash.

Later in the day, B Praneeth will take on M Caljouw of in his second and final men’s singles Group D match.

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