BAI announces cash awards for Sindhu, Saina

2017 BWF World Championships Srikanth Sindhu Saina in in action on Day 5

In the other semi-final, 2012 Olympic bronze medallist Saina lost against Okuhara as she settled for a bronze medal. But overall I am happy that I made it to the semis after recently coming out of an injury.

Sindhu has won two bronze medals in 2013 and 2014. Or maybe there was an echoing hollow, all-consuming nothingness at the leads she had let slip in every game, at key moments, through errors both forced by her opponent or those she had eagerly rushed into. The Japanese lobbed and backed them up with drops, making Sindhu bend and rise quite regularly - draining her.

When the Japanese won the opening game, it put all the Indian badminton fans into a tensed situation but Sindhu known always to make a comeback won the second game.

The results: Men's singles: Quarterfinals: Son Wan Ho (Kor) bt K. Srikanth 21-14, 21-18; Lin Dan (Chn) bt Vincent Wong Wing Ki (HK) 21-17, 21-1; Viktor Axelsen (Den) bt Chou Tien Chen (Tpe) 21-18, 20-22, 21-16.

Asked about her chances ahead of the final, Sindhu had admitted "not going to be an easy match" but that she would give her best.

And it worked. Nozomi exhausted out Sindhu by prolonging the rallies as the Hyderabadi tried to close the points quickly and made errors. Add to that, injury woes in the past year, the regret that playing in Rio only aggravated her injury and a diminished presence on the media radar.

The group stages proved to be a cruise for Sindhu, who topped the group and qualified for the knockout stages.

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The Indian used her height to good effect, retrieving the shuttles quickly and started using her cross-court returns to trouble the Japanese.

Where will thePV Sindhu vs Nozomi Okuhara final be played? Then it was the finals, where Sindhu was pit against Carolina Marin.

With this win, Sindhu also became the only second Indian to reach the final of a World Championship after Saina achieved that feat in the last edition at Jakarta.

This has been India's best World Championship so far with two podium finishes for the first time in history.

But, if you look at it closely, Sindhu's Olympics silver should rank right up there for a number of reasons.

After comfortably winning the opening game, Nehwal went down in the second before she rebounded strongly to register a 21-19, 18-21, 21-15 win over her Scottish opponent. Etsuko Toganoo and Emiko Ueno had won gold for the East Asian nation in the first ever World Championships (in women's doubles). She beat Tai Tzu, Wang and Okuhara, all three were considered huge favourites for the gold medal.

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