Dominant Sindhu and Momota cruise into final

Olympic silver medallist PV Sindhu will bid to avenge her defeat to Nozomi Okuhara in the 2017 world final, with Kento Momota on course to retain his crown in Basel

By Saurabh Shankar and Rory Jiwani ·

PV Sindhu has reached her third consecutive BWF World Championship final.

The Olympic silver medallist from Rio 2016 was in supreme form as she beat Chen Yufei in straight games to leave her one win away from that elusive global title.

The 24-year-old was utterly dominant in the first game with the Chinese unable to respond to her net-kissing drop shots.

She outclassed the fourth seed, using her height to great advantage, to take it 21-7 in just 15 minutes.

Chen showed some fight at the start of the second game but Sindhu was still on top at the net as she took an 11-7 lead into the mid-game interval.

The Indian moved up a gear as Chen faded, going 19-11 up before sealing victory 21-7, 21-14.

PV Sindhu celebrates after her semi-final win over Chen Yufei in the BWF World Championships in Basel, Switzerland

Okuhara sets up 2017 final rematch

Sindhu now faces Nozomi Okuhara in a repeat of the 2017 final after the Japanese defeated 2013 world champion Ratchanok Intanon in three games.

The Thai led 12-8 in the opening game but Okuhara won nine points in succession to go 17-12 ahead.

Then the pendulum shifted again with this superb winner from Intanon starting her own run of nine consecutive points to take it 21-17.

Okuhara regrouped after that setback and it was the Thai who, despite showing flashes of inspiration, made errors at the crucial times

The Japanese came back to win 17-21, 21-18, 21-15 and put her on the brink of her second world title.

Nozomi Okuhara during her semi-final win over Ratchanok Intanon at the BWF World Championships in Basel, Switzerland

In her way is old rival Sindhu who beat her in the Rio 2016 semi-finals.

The Indian holds a slender 8-7 advantage in their previous meetings and Sunday's final looks too close to call.

Momota closes in on back-to-back titles

Kento Momota's defence proved too strong for B Sai Praneeth’s attacking prowess as he downed the Indian in the men’s singles semi-finals.

After fine wins over Indonesian pair Anthony Ginting and Jonatan Christie, Praneeth matched the world number one point for point in the opening game.

The Japanese left-hander took an 11-10 lead into the mid-game interval, but then started to show his class with his agility and calculated smashes seeing him take the opener 21-13.

Kento Momota celebrates his semi-final win over B Sai Praneeth at the BWF World Championships in Basel, Switzerland

Praneeth's energetic early attacks took their toll in the second game as Momota's stamina and precision won the day.

Momota closed out victory 21-13, 21-8 to leave him one match away from retaining his world title.

For 27-year-old Praneeth, there was the consolation of the bronze medal, India's first men's singles medal at a World Championships.

Momota will now face Anders Antonsen who beat Thailand's Kantaphon Wangcharoen 21-15, 21-10.

Antonsen was always in control with some vicious smashes helping him pile up the points.

He will be hoping to take the title back to Denmark after Viktor Axelsen's victory in Glasgow two years ago.


19 - 25 Aug 2019

BWF World Championships - Basel