18th August 2016 will be remembered as a red-letter for India. First it was Sakshi Malik who opened the medal account by winning bronze in wrestling. Next it was Sindhu who produced a dominating performance over Japan’s Okuhara to move into the finals. History was created as she is first Indian to achieve this milestone.
So far it has been a dream run for Sindhu at Rio. She came up with a career best performance in quarterfinals to stun world no 2 Wang Yihan. The most impressive thing about her is the aggressiveness and determination to fight back. She bettered her quarterfinal performance in the semifinal as she crushed her world no 6 opponent in straight sets.
The first set was fought pretty closely. Sindhu took advantage and had a slender lead throughout the set. The Japanese shuttler fought hard and came back into the match in the second half of the first set. But Sindhu had the last laugh as she secured the set point with her signature smash. Second set saw a turn around as Okuhara took lead over Sindhu.
But the unforced errors made her to throw it away. Sindhu took just a one point lead at the end of first half of the second set. This turned out to be a game changing one. In the second half she took off like a Concorde to widen the gap. She remained aggressive as well as composed throughout the match. The Japanese had no clue to her smashes and felt the pressure of being eliminated. Sindhu took advantage of this and ran through her opponent. Her smashes and placements were unplayable as she kept the Japanese flying and stretching for the shuttlecock. She completed the formalities in a matter of minutes to book a place in the final.
Now she’s up a against a higher ranked Spanish player Carolina Marin. Marin has the edge over Sindhu as she leads the battle 4-3. But Statistics can’t get in the way as all hopes are pinned on her to create history by becoming the first Indian player to win a gold medal in badminton.