PV Sindhu advances to semifinals of Malaysia Masters, Kidambi Srikanth out | Badminton News

KUALA LUMPUR: Star Indian commuter PV Sindhu has qualified for the semi-finals of the Malaysia Masters Super 500 tournament with a hard-fought victory Yi Man Zhang of China in women’s singles here on Friday.
While two-time Olympic medalist Sindhu, ranked sixth in the tournament, beat lower-ranked Chinese Yi Man Zhang 21-16, 13-21, 22-20, Prannoy took a 25-23, 18-21 win. , 21-13 against Kenta Nishimoto. of Japan in the quarter-finals.
Sindhu will face seventh seed and world number nine Gregoria Mariska Tunjung of Indonesia in the semifinals on Saturday. Tunjung upset second seed Yi Zhi Wang of China in the quarterfinals 21-18, 22-20.
Tunjung has been in fine form recently and Sindhu lost to her in Madrid’s Spain Masters final in straight matches in April. The Indian will however go to the semi-finals with a 7-1 advantage over Tunjung.
World number nine Prannoy takes on 57th-ranked qualifier Christian Adinata of Indonesia, who beat Kidambi Srikanth 16-21, 21-16, 21-11 in another quarter-final, in the semi-final on Saturday.
Prannoy has never played against 21-year-old Adinata, who started playing at senior level last year.
For world number 13 Sindhu, it was something of a revenge for her round of 16 loss to 18th-ranked Zhang at the All England Open earlier this year. She had also beaten her Chinese opponent in the same tournament last year.
The first game was intriguing. Sindhu found herself on the back foot as she was leading 0-5, but she recovered well and scored 10-all. After that, Sindhu led throughout and won the opener 21-16.
In the second game, Zhang learned his lessons and didn’t allow Sindhu to come back unlike the first. From 2-all, it was Zhang who led until the end to tie the game at 1-1.
The decider was neck and neck throughout and it could have gone either way. From 12 all, the commuters only gave themselves a two-point lead, and it lasted like that until 17 all.
But from there, Sindhu zoomed in to take a 20-17 lead but Zhang won the next three points to level the score at 20-20. But in the end, Sindhu kept his composure to grab the next two points to win game three and the match.
Prannoy also found himself in a neck and neck struggle with Nishimoto in the opener as the pair were tied at 12-all, 17-all and 20-all. They were tied in the next three points before Prannoy won 25-23.

The second game went like the first initially, but Nishimoto took the lead after 9-all to take a 17-11 lead. Prannoy fought back to close the gap but it wasn’t enough as his Japanese opponents drew 1-1.
The decider, however, turned out to be a one-sided affair in favor of Prannoy as he just outplayed his opponent after 4-all to win it easily and pocket the match.
In another men’s singles quarter-final, Srikanth lost 21-16, 16-21, 11-21 to Adinata in 57 minutes to retire from the tournament.


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