Jakarta: Rio Olympic silver-medallist PV Sindhu was the only one to register a win over her opponent as the Indian women’s badminton team lost 1-3 to Japan in the quarter-finals of the ongoing 18th edition of the Asian Games here on Monday.
In the first women’s singles match, Sindhu produced a rich vein of form as she eased past Japan’s Akane Yamaguchi 21-18, 21-19 in a 41-minute clash to give India a 1-0 lead.
Earlier, Sindhu had defeated Yamaguchi in the recently-concluded World Badminton Championship to make a second-place finish on the podium.
In women’s doubles match, the Indian duo of Sikki Reddy and Arathi Sara slumped to a 15-21, 6-21 defeat at the hands of Fukushima Yuki and Hirota Sayaka to allow Japan make it 1-1.
Meanwhile, former world number one Saina Nehwal was handed over a close 11-21, 25-23, 16-21 defeat by ace Japanese player Nozomi Okuhara in a thrilling women’s singles match that lasted one hour and 11 minutes.
In the must-win fourth dead rubber, the Indian pair of PV Sindhu and Ashwini Ponnappa were thrashed 13-21, 12-21 by Misaki Matsutomo and Ayaka Takahashi as Japan took an unassailable 3-1 lead to storm into the semi-finals.
Reflecting on the ouster from the tournament, Sindhu said that though the Indian shuttlers gave their 100 per cent, the Japanese team were way better today.
Speaking to ANI, she said, “I think the draw was very tough. It wasn’t easy. Giving the team a good start from my side was really good, doubles also did really well but those players are seeded and played a strategy game,”
Later in the day, the Indian men’s badminton team will take on hosts Indonesia for a place in the semi-finals of the event.(ANI)