Sindhu out in first round at All England Championship

Indian star PV Sindhu’s poor run of form continued at the All England Badminton Championship as she crashed out in the first round after going down in straight games to China’s Zhang Yi Man here on Wednesday. Sindhu, world number nine and two-time Olympic medallist, lost 17-21, 11-21 in the women’s singles match that lasted 39 minutes. This is the third time this year that Sindhu has not progressed beyond the first round.

She had lost to Spain’s Carolina Marin at the Malaysia Open in January and could not go beyond the first round at the Indian Open in the same month. The Indian had recently parted ways with her Korean coach Park Tae-Sang, under whom she won a bronze medal at the Tokyo Olympics. Sindhu did not appear in her colors throughout the match. World No. 17 Zhang Yi showed more agility and aggression than her. Before this match, the record of both these players was equal to 1-1.

At the start of the first game, Sindhu led 6-5 and then made it 16-13 but the Chinese player scored seven consecutive points to lead 20-16 and then won the first game in 21 minutes. In the second game, both the players were initially tied at 5-5 but Sindhu made some unforced errors which soon took her 5-10 down. The Indian player could not make a comeback after this and lost the second game and the match.

Earlier, Indian women’s doubles pair of Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand defeated Thailand’s seventh seeded pair of Jongkolphan Kititharakul and Ravinda Prajongjai 21-18 21-14 in a first round match that lasted 46 minutes. The Indian pair will take on the Japanese pair of Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota in the pre-quarterfinals. On Tuesday, Lakshya Sen and HS Prannoy had won their respective matches to advance to the second round of men’s singles.

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