Sindhu trumps Yufei to face Okuhara in the finals

Either way, it will be historic regardless of the outcome.

Nozomi showed incredible ability to retrieve and kept coming back as Sindhu tried maintaining a slender lead with both displaying badminton of the highest class, tiring themselves out.

Indian badminton star PV Sindhu failed to deliver in the final of the World Badminton Championships as she was defeated by her Japanese opponent here on Sunday.

Who has the advantage?

In the longest match of the tournament, which tested the physical and mental strength of both the players, Sindhu lost 19-21, 22-20, 20-22 after battling hard for one hour and 49 minutes. This will surely cheer up the poster girl of Indian badminton, who went through a very tough period since August last when she limped out of Rio Olympics. Nozomi was outlasting Sindhu in the early matches but after Rio, Sindhu has two successive wins to her credit. One can jump the gun and say Sindhu may hold the edge considering she has got the better of Okuhara in the last two encounters, but this is a different stage, it is the all-important finals and nothing can be predicted. "I remembered from yesterday that anything can happen, because I was game point to 17 ahead but she (Cheung) caught up".

Jose Mourinho content with squad even if new players don't come in
This United squad is evolving into a well-balanced set of players, made up of experienced, talented and youthful legs. Usually it would be a player with the most influence, someone who the other players would look up to as a leader.

In the decider, Saina grabbed an early 3-1 lead but Okuhara soon started dominating the rallies.

This will be a game of contrasting styles.

The 27-year-old Saina's second round defeat to unheralded Ukrainian Marija Ulitina was the lowest point for India in Rio, having entered the Games as the previous edition's bronze medallist and a victor of multiple worldwide tournaments. Though I have beaten her (Okuhara) in the Olympics, it is a new match and there will be a new strategy. It was a close fight in the finals and it was Spain's Carolina Marin Martin, who won the gold medal. She sealed the contest when Sun went long once again.

Earlier after winning her quarterfinal match, Saina, after nearly a year, admitted that she should not have played at the 2016 Rio Olympics. Sindhu and Saina's presence in opposite halves also raised visions of an all-Indian final. The Indian, on the other hand, had two of her easiest matches in the quarters and semis that should have bolstered her confidence even further.

The final match witnessed strong fight between the two opponents. It was a picture of utter ruthlessness and determination. I could feel my legs getting to things I maybe wouldn't have before and using skills I didn't have to be able to use before, so I can definitely feel lots of little changes in my game.


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