PV Sindhu plays epic 52-shot rally with Akane Yamaguchi in Dubai Open finals – Watch

Rio Olympics silver medallist Sindhu lost a hard-fought battle 21-15, 12-21, 19-21

India’s star shuttler PV Sindhu might have lost the season-ending BWF World Superseries Finals to world No 2 Akane Yamaguchi at the Hamdan Sports Complex in Dubai on December 17, but she showed her fitness after playing an epic 52-shot rally with the Japanese shuttler.

The highlight of the match (that lasted for an hour and 34 minutes) was the third set when both the shuttlers were tied at 13-13 and they played out non-stop 52 shots rally. Both the shuttlers gave each other a tough fight, but Sindhu’s cross-court drop shot made the difference as Yamaguchi only managed to slide the shuttle under the net.


Rio Olympics silver medallist Sindhu lost a hard-fought battle 21-15, 12-21, 19-21. With this win, the 20-year-old Japanese improved her head-to-head record against Sindhu to 3-5.

It was India’s third medal in the season-ending tournament after Saina Nehwal (2011) and the mixed doubles pair of V Diju and Jwala Gutta (2009).

Speaking after the loss, Sindhu said,

This is really hard as I was so close to getting the title,” Sindhu, who finished runner-up in the 2017 World Championships

Yamaguchi said,

During the entire match I saw the trophy placed on the side of the court and I thought ‘I want this trophy, I want this’! I changed my tactics and kept the shuttlecock high in the second game.

In the men’s singles final, reigning champion Viktor Axelsen of Denmark overcame Malaysian veteran Lee Chong Wei 19-21, 21-19, 21-15 in an hour and 24 minutes.

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The men’s doubles title went to Indonesians Marcus Fernaldi Gideon and Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo, who got the better of China’s Liu Cheng and Zhang Nan 21-16, 21-15.

Japan’s Shiho Tanaka and Koharu Yonemoto fought off compatriots Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota 21-16, 21-15 in the women’s doubles final.

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In the mixed doubles final, Chinese world No 1 pair of Zheng Siwei and Chen Qingchen registered a 21-15, 22-20 victory against Tang Chun Man/Tse Ying Suet from Hong Kong.