Macau: Two-time defending champion P. V. Sindhu completed a hat-trick of women’s singles title at the $ 120,000 Macau Open Grand Prix Gold after defeating Japan’s Minatsu Mitani in the finals here today.
Sindhu produced a dominating game to notch up a 21-9 21-23 21-14 win against sixth seed Mitani in a women’s singles match that lasted an hour and six minutes here.
World No. 12 Indian dished out some superb strokes and acute angled returns to bamboozle the Japanese, besides making some sound judgements at the baseline to get across Mitani, who struggled to keep the shuttle inside the court. Sindhu dominated the proceedings right from the start as she rode on the errors of Mitani to reach 11-5 at the break.
Mitani came up with an aggressive rally and sealed it with a down the line smash but she failed to curb her errors and most of her returns went wide and long to allow Sindhu lead 17-6 in a jiffy.
Sindhu, on the other hand, was mostly accurate with her smashes and drops as she lead 19—9. The Indian came up with some acute angled returns to trouble Mitani and reached the game point with a smash. The Japanese then went wide to hand over the first game to Sindhu.
After the change of sides, Sindhu once again started on a confident note but she also began missing the lines and Mitani lead 4—2. The Indian checked her unforced errors and came up with stunning smashes to wrest the lead and move to 7—4.
Sindhu made a few wrong judgements at the baseline and also found the net to allow Mitani to surge ahead. At 10—9, Mitani produced her first winner —— a cross court smash —— which left a stretched Sindhu stranded to go into the break with two—point lead.
Mitani started off with a service fault but the Japanese came up with accurate placements which caught Sindhu off guard. But the Indian kept breathing down her neck and clawed back at 16—16.
The duo moved neck—and—neck till 19—19 when Sindhu made an important line judgement to move to match point. But she sent the shuttle long next. A delicate net point once again gave Sindhu a 21—20 match point but Mitani saved again. Sindhu next hit long to give the game point to Mitani, who grabbed the opportunity after the Indian netted following a long engrossing rally.
Sindhu said it is a fantastic feeling to complete a hat-trick of wins at the Macau Open on Sunday.
“There is no doubt that I badly needed this win, having had a disappointing year so far. In that context, I am glad that I won the title,” Sindhu told The Hindu.
“It did not require any changes in my game as such for this event. All I tried was to stay focussed and minimise on unforced errors,” Sindhu said.
She added, “The best part of this is win is that I was engaged in long rallies right through which also suggested that I am back to peak in terms of fitness too.”
Sindhu will next play at the $120,000 Indonesia Masters Grand Prix Gold.
Meanwhile, the Badminton Association of India President Akhilesh Das Gupta has announced a cash prize of Rs. 10 lakh for Sindhu.
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