Indian shuttle queen PV Sindhu avenged her 2017 World Championships final defeat to Nozomi Okuhara in yet another spectacular final played by the two at the Korea Open in Seoul on Sunday. The two gladiators fought for 1 hour 23 minutes before the Indian managed to stave off the eighth-seeded Japanese for a 22-20, 11-21, 21-18 win.
With this new title, the 22-year-old Sindhu achieved some more accolades and scripted yet more history for Indian badminton. She became the first ever Indian to reign supreme at the Korea Open which is now her third career Superseries triumph following wins at the China Open last November and the India Open in March.
Not only that, Sindhu’s accomplishment has ensured that India remains on top of the Superseries title leaderboard in singles this season with as many as five wins in this category in 2017.
The Sindhu vs Okuhara final was much awaited following their epic summit clash in Glasgow just three weeks back. The Japanese had not dropped a game en route to the final and was considered the slight favourite in this one.
The lanky Pullela Gopichand protégé, meanwhile, had shown signs of struggle as she conceded a couple of games.
But she was the one who had the better start of the two even though the reigning world champion made a fine comeback to have two game points in the opener. The determined Sindhu prevented the Japanese from converting even a single one with some intelligent shotmaking.
The former All England Open champion, however, regrouped to storm through the second game and force a decider.
Their stunning duel reached its climax in the decider as the two conjured up magic to produce an exhilarating 56-shot rally that became the talking point of the day. After that, Sindhu held her nerves to halt a late surge from her old rival to shut out the memorable victory.
Sindhu’s win naturally sent the social media abuzz with loads of congratulatory messages pouring in. Among them, many Indian sports stars led by the cricket maestro Sachin Tendulkar too saluted her landmark accomplishment.
Here are some of the tweets: