Former world champion PV Sindhu, Lakshya Sen and the men’s doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty sailed into the finals in their respective badminton events and confirmed at least three more medals for India at the Commonwealth Games 2022 in Birmingham, UK, on Sunday.
World championships silver medallist Kidambi Srikanth and the women’s doubles pair of Treesa Jolly-Gayatri Gopichand, meanwhile, lost in their semi-finals and will play for bronze later in the day at the National Exhibition Centre.
PV Sindhu, seventh in the badminton world rankings, beat the world No. 19 Yeo Jia Min 21-19, 21-17 to make her second straight CWG final. PV Sindhu was beaten for gold by Saina Nehwal at Gold Coast in 2018. PV Sindhu also has a CWG bronze medal from 2014.
PV Sindhu will take on world No. 13 Michelle Li of Canada in the final on Monday. The Indian shuttler has beaten the Canadian in both the matches they have played this year in straight games.
In the semi-finals against Yeo Jia Min, two-time Olympic medallist PV Sindhu was trailing 5-9 in the opening game but ramped up her attacks to take the next six points. The Indian eventually pocketed the first game despite a late comeback by the fourth seed.
Yeo Jia Min looked brilliant in patches in the second game but a consistent PV Sindhu dictated the rallies to sail into the final in 49 minutes.
While Saina Nehwal has two Commonwealth Games women’s singles gold medals to her name, PV Sindhu will become the first Indian women’s shuttler to win three Commonwealth Games medals in singles on Monday.
In the men’s singles badminton event, world No. 10 Lakshya Sen had to overcome a stiff challenge from upcoming Singaporean shuttler Jia Heng Jason Teh in the semi-finals.
Lakshya Sen was pegged back after winning the first game but eventually finished on top by winning the semi-final 21-10, 18-21, 21-16.
For the gold on his CWG debut, Lakshya Sen will face rising Malaysian shuttler Tze Yong NG, who beat Kidambi Srikanth 13-21, 21-19, 21-10 in the other semi-finals.
Kidambi Srikanth, who will miss out on the back-to-back appearance in the CWG men’s singles final, suffered his second loss to Tze Yong NG at CWG 2022. The Indian shuttler had lost to Tze Yong NG in the mixed team event final earlier at Birmingham 2022.
In the men’s doubles, Satwiksairaj Rankireddy-Chirag Shetty beat Malaysia’s Chan Peng Soon-Tan Kian Meng 21-6, 21-15 to make their second straight CWG final. They will be up against Ben Lane and Sean Vendy of England in the final on Monday.
The women’s pair of Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand, meanwhile, lost to Malaysia’s Pearly Tan and Thinaah Muralitharan 21-13, 21-16 and will take on Australia’s Hsuan-Yu Wendy Chen and Gronya Somerville for the bronze later in the day.