PV Sindhu had missed out on the gold medal on two occasions. First in an epic final in 2017 against Nozomi Okuhara and then a year later in Nanjing, China, against Spain’s Carolina Marin.
But the 24-year-old Indian ensured that there were no hiccups third time around as she decimated Okuhara 21-7, 21-7 in just 38 minutes to become the first Indian badminton player to be crowned world champion.
And the five-time world championship medallist could not contain her joy at finally achieving the stated goal that first she called herself a ‘National champion’ and then corrected herself.
“Well, I was expecting this for a very long time now. So I got it and I think I have to enjoy it, I have to feel it and made me feel very special when the flag was there and national anthem was playing. It’s a very proud moment,” she said soon after the match.
“I have no words for expressed as I was waiting for this for a long time. Last time it was a silver, even before that it was silver but finally, I got it. I’m really very happy,” she added.
Sindhu dedicated her win to her mother, Vijaya, who is also celebrating her birthday on Sunday.“It’s my mom’s birthday today and I dedicate this to her. She will be very happy today. I thought in my mind that I have to give her something [on this birthday] and finally I give her this gold medal,” she added.
Explaining her approach in the final, the 24-year-old said she looked at the match as just another game like the semi-final or the quarter-final not put too much pressure on herself about winning the title.” Winning and losing is secondary but for me going on the court and giving my 100% was important and I have given that and I am very happy.”
The Japanese game plan against Sindhu has always been about engaging her in long rallies and then trying to tire her out in the bargain. But Sindhu not only countered that plan well on Sunday, but she also punched holes in them with an aggressive style of play and making herself big on the court.
Sindhu maintained her intensity throughout the match as Okuhara was never able to come to terms with it.