Commonwealth Games 2022 badminton: PV Sindhu, Lakshya Sen enter semi-finals

PV Sindhu came from a game down to win her match. India will have five badminton players, including Kidambi Srikanth, competing in the semi-finals on Sunday.

By Ali Asgar Nalwala
Picture by 2022 Getty Images

Former world champion PV Sindhu stormed into the women’s singles semi-finals at the Commonwealth Games 2022 after seeing off a tough challenge from Malaysian No. 1 Goh Jin Wei in the quarter-finals in Birmingham, UK, on Saturday.

PV Sindhu, a two-time Olympic medallist, beat Goh Jin Wei 19-21, 21-14, 21-18 at the National Exhibition Centre for her second win over the Malaysian at CWG 2022. PV Sindhu had pipped the Youth Olympic Games champion 22-20, 21-17 in India's mixed team final earlier in the week.

PV Sindhu, the top seed at Birmingham 2022, started the match strongly but Goh Jin Wei, seeded sixth, went into the break trailing by just two points. Goh Jin Wei then used her skillful drop shots to trouble PV Sindhu and lead for the first time in the match at 16-15.

PV Sindhu tried to mount a comeback using her height to create angles but Goh Jin Wei unleashed a flurry of smashes to take the opening game.

PV Sindhu, known for her endurance, amped up her game to tire out Goh Jin Wei with longer rallies and lead 11-8 at the second break. Goh Jin Wei, who is on a comeback trail after retiring due to health reasons last year, struggled physically and could not close the gap as the match stretched into the decider.

With tactics paying off, PV Sindhu continued to test Goh Jin Wei physically with an average of nine shots per rally. Despite trailing at one stage, PV Sindhu persisted to beat Goh Jin Wei in one hour and 17 minutes.

This will be PV Sindhu’s third straight semi-finals at the Commonwealth Games. She has a bronze and a silver from the 2014 and 2018 editions, respectively.

PV Sindhu will now take on the fourth seed Yeo Jia Min from Singapore for a place in the final.

Apart from Aakarshi Kashyap, who lost to Scotland’s world No. 18 Kirsty Gilmour 21-10, 21-7, all other Indians competing on the day progressed into the semi-finals.

In the men’s singles, world championships silver medallist Kidambi Srikanth edged past England’s Toby Penty 21-19, 21-17 while India’s highest-ranked men’s badminton player Lakshya Sen beat Paul Georges of Mauritius 21-12, 21-11.

The doubles also saw Indians breeze into the semi-finals. Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand, daughter of Indian legend Pullela Gopichand, beat Jamaica’s Tahlia Richardson and Katherine Wynter 21-6, 21-8 to storm into the semi-finals.

India’s Thomas Cup heroes Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy, meanwhile, saw the back of Australia’s Jacob Schueler and Nathan Tang with a 21-9, 21-11 win.

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