"It will not be an easy match and hopefully, I'll get the gold."
Indian badminton star P.V. Sindhu, 23, has reached the final of the women’s badminton final at the Asian Games after defeating Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi on Monday, August 27, 2018.
She overcame a mid-match dip in form to defeat Yamaguchi 21-17, 15-21, 21-10.
World number three Sindhu could become India’s first-ever women’s singles gold medallist in any racket sport.
She is already assured of a place in Indian badminton history, becoming the first Indian to reach the final at the Asian games.
Her compatriot, 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Saina Nehwal, claimed the bronze medal.
She became the first Indian to win a singles medal in badminton at the Asian Games in 36 years.
Syed Modi was the last medallist when he won the men’s singles bronze at the 1982 games in New Delhi.
As it Happened
Sindhu has won four of her five encounters against Yamaguchi this year which gave her confidence prior to the match.
The two time World Championships silver medallist had a huge advantage, which was down to her tall frame and long limbs.
Her frame helped her with steep angled smashes and got to everything Yamaguchi could throw at her which helped Sindhu take the first game.
Despite her stocky frame, Yamaguchi is a great returner and began to cause the Indian problems.
Her deceptive round the head shots were very effective and took the match into a decider.
The third game saw Sindhu comfortably win to see her into the final.
Going into the tournament, the finalist started her campaign very nervous.
“I know I started the Asiad very shakily but I kept getting better with every match. I always believed in my ability.”
When asked about her chances in the final she said:
“It will not be an easy match and hopefully, I’ll get the gold.”
“There is some strategy against her but I will have to change it depending on how the match goes.”
Chief coach Gopi Chand feels that Sindhu should not go into the match thinking it is the final but as any other match.
This would ease the pressure.
Her teammate Nehwal gave her thought on the final.
She said: “I would say it’s 50-50.”
“Sindhu is taller, has more options to counter, she can play shots which I cannot play since she is taller.”
Nehwal’s historic achievement at the Asian Games has seen fans take to Twitter to congratulate her.
Heartiest congratulations to @NSaina for our first medal in individual singles in Badminton in 36 years at the Asian Games! #AsianGames2018
— Jyotiraditya Scindia (@JM_Scindia) August 27, 2018
Congratulations @NSaina for winning the badminton bronze medal at the #AsianGames2018 Keep working hard and keep going for glory!
— Lokesh Nara (@naralokesh) August 27, 2018
Nehwal’s sporting achievement saw an Indian sporting legend give their congratulations for the historic medal.
Congratulations on your Bronze medal, @NSaina! May you continue making us proud. #AsianGames2018 pic.twitter.com/LQuQ15BI57
— Sachin Tendulkar (@sachin_rt) August 27, 2018
Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi praised Nehwal for becoming the first medallist in 36 years.
Trust @NSaina to make us proud and script history!
Her Bronze in the #AsianGames2018 is the first ever medal for India in the women's singles Badminton category.
India congratulates our star badminton player for yet another success. pic.twitter.com/zifupmwsr0
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 27, 2018
Sindhu takes on world number one Tai Tzu Ying of Taipei in the final on Tuesday, August 28, 2018.