New Delhi: World No. 3 P.V Sindhu registered a stunning victory over World No. 1 Tai Tzu Ying of Chinese Taipei to help the defending champions Chennai Smashers, draw level against Ahmedabad Smash Masters in the Premier Badminton League (PBL).
It was a huge win for Chennai as they were 0-1 down earlier in the tie and Sindhu’s loss would have put them in a very precarious position. However, the Rio Olympics silver medalist did not disappoint as she beat Tai Tzu 15-11, 10-15, 15-12 to keep Chennai alive in the do-or-die contest. This was also Tai Tzu’s first loss in this season.
Chennai who came into the tie last in the standings, with seven points to their tally, needed a loss as it would end their hopes of qualifying for the knock-out stages in the Vodafone PBL season.
The Taiwanese shuttler who came at the back of a stunning win over Saina Nehwal started from where she left. Tai Tzu was almost unplayable and deceived Sindhu with her clever drops. She raced to an 8-5 lead and it looked like the Taiwanese shuttler would close the game without much of a competition from Sindhu.
However, after the break, Sindhu, heavily strapped on her right thigh, was a much different player and switched gears to eventually seize the momentum and go up in the match.
In the second game, Sindhu cashed in on Tai Tzu’s initial mistakes and blitz to an early lead. But, Tai Tzu came back strong to lead 8-6 at the break.
After the breather, even though Sindhu started the proceeding by winning two consecutive points, it was the World No. 1 player, who maintained her composure to finish the game to take the match into the decider.
In the third game, Sindhu took the charge early and aided by her opponent’s unforced errors, she entered with a lead of 8-6.
After the change of ends, Tai Tzu, known for her ability to bounce back from nowhere, fought herself back in the contest and gave Sindhu no place to breathe. However, Sindhu remained cool as an ice and with scores tied 12-12, she won three straight points to send the packed stadium into a euphoric mood.
Sindhu said after the match: “It was a great win and I feel I did extremely well to beat Tai Tzu. She played very well and I am really happy to have won the match. The crowd was extremely motivating and their support helped me a lot in getting this win.”