PV Sindhu went down fighting in the semifinal against top seed Akane Yamaguchi in the Badminton Asia Championship on Saturday.

The sixth-seeded Indian took the first game 21-13 and was leading 11-6 in the second game before a tough umpiring call seemed to upset her.

The umpire said that Sindhu was taking too long to serve – a charge that was vehemently denied by Sindhu but the officials stood firm with their decision. The point seemed to change things for Sindhu and Yamaguchi.

While Sindhu sought the mental balance she had maintained in the game thus far, Yamaguchi suddenly started finding her spots with the drift not troubling her anymore. The top seed came back very strongly to take the game 21-19 and then carried the form into the decider as well.

Yamaguchi took the early lead in the third game and then stayed ahead throughout. Sindhu did attempt to close the gap but the Japanese star stayed ahead thanks to a combination of some resolute defence and good attacking play.

Over on Court 2, Korean star An Se Young was defeated in three games by Wang Zhi Yi 10-21, 21-12, 21-16. It won’t be a [1] vs [2] battle in the final.