PV Sindhu sets up rematch with Nozomi Okuhara at World Championships final

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PV Sindhu (L) and Nozomi Okuhara meet in historic World Championships rematch. (photo: AFP)
PV Sindhu (L) and Nozomi Okuhara meet in historic World Championships rematch. (photo: AFP)

Basel: On Sunday, India’s PV Sindhu has set up a much-anticipated rematch with Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara in what would be a repeat of the 2017 World Championships women’s singles final.

Both top women’s singles players in the world met in a pulsating 2017 World Championships final, where Sindhu lost 19-21, 22-20, 20-22 against Okuhara in a grueling match that lasted one hour and 50 minutes.

Okuhara also became the first women’s singles World Champion from Japan after winning the 2017 marathon match in nearly two hours.

On Saturday, Sindhu showed good composure to overcome Chen Yu Fei of China 21-7, 21-14 in the semi-finals while Okuhara outlasted Ratchanok Intanon of Thailand 17-21, 21-18, 21-15.

In addition to women’s singles, women’s doubles defending champions Mayu Matsumoto/Wakana Nagahara and the 2018 World Championships women’s doubles silver medalists Yuki Fukushima/Sayaka Hirota will clash against each other again in the final.

The No. 1 seeds Mayu Matsumoto/Wakana Nagahara battled past Greysia Polii/Apriyani Rahayu of Indonesia 21-12, 21-19 in 50 minutes while Yuki Fukushima/Sayaka Hirota stopped Du Yue/Li Yin Hui of China on Saturday 21-11, 21-17, after the Chinese pair created the longest match in badminton history that lasted 126 minutes in the quarter-finals.

Meanwhile, the 2018 mixed doubles World Champions Zheng Siwei/Huang Yaqiong will try to defend their title against Dechapol Puavaranukroh/Sapsiree Taerattanachai of Thailand in the final.

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