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PV Sindhu vs Saina Nehwal, Senior National Badminton Championships, Highlights: As It Happened

Senior National Badminton Championships: Catch all the highlights of the blockbuster final between PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal.

By HT Correspondent | Feb 16, 2019 17:46 IST

As It Happened: Saina Nehwal won her fourth Senior National Badminton Championships crown as she got the better of top seed PV Sindhu in Guwahati. Saina won the match in straight games 21-18, 21-15 to lift the title. This is Saina’s fourth national title.

Follow the highlights below -

15:14 hrs IST

Trophy presentation

Saina Nehwal takes home her fourth nationals title while PV Sindhu will have to be content with second place for the second year in a row. Assam CM and former Sports Minister Sarbananda Sonowal hands over the trophies to the athletes.

17:07 hrs IST

Saina crowned champion!

That’s it folks, Saina Nehwal wins the match convincingly to win her fourth title. Saina beats Sindhu 21-18, 21-15 to successfully defend her title.

17:05 hrs IST

Saina on the verge of emphatic win

Saina Nehwal has extender her lead to 19-13 after a string of impressive plays. Sindhu seems to have dropped her weapons as she has been no match for her opponent today.

17:01 hrs IST

Saina extends lead in second game

Saina Nehwal is moving all guns blazing towards her fourth National title as she takes a 15-12 lead now. Sindhu hits the shuttle into the net and this kind of unforced error has marred the top seed’s game today.

16:58 hrs IST

Saina leads at break

Saina Nehwal once again goes into the break with a slender lead, same as the first game. Saina leads 11-9 and the pressure is on Sindhu to hit back in order to stay alive in the match.

16:54 hrs IST

Players still tied

Saina’s brilliant cross-court play is being match up by Sindhu’s powerfull shots and there is nothing between the two players in the second game which is locked at 7-7 now.

16:51 hrs IST

Players going neck and neck in second game

The second game has started in the same vein as the first as PV Sindhu have taken an early lead. Sindhu leads 5-3 to make her intentions clear. But Saina wins back to back points to make it 5-5 again.

16:48 hrs IST

Saina takes first game

Saina Nehwal takes the first game very easily 21-18. She takes the final point by hitting a brilliant smash straight down the court. Sindhu will have to raise her game to stay alive in the final.

16:45 hrs IST

Saina crushes Sindhu’s fightback

After the short forced break, Sindhu won two back to back points to cut the lead down to just one point. But Saina was having none of it as she raised her game and won successive points herself to be on match point.

16:42 hrs IST

Match has been halted

The match been halted because of light malfunction. The two players have been forced to take a break. Sindhu doesn’t look happy and is making it clear to the chair umpire.

16:40 hrs IST

Saina on song

Sindhu wins a point courtesy of a brilliant cross-court smash but then loses two points in a row — owing to bad judgement. Saina continues to rake in the points as she now leads 18-15.

16:35 hrs IST

Saina extends her lead

Saina Nehwal has upped her game after the break as she wins three points in a row to take her lead to 15-11. Sindhu is not helping her cause by hitting multiple unforced errors.

16:32 hrs IST

Saina leads at first break

Saina Nehwal lead 11-10 at the first break of the match. The former world number 1 has grown in confidence as the match has progressed while as for Sindhu, she is reeling because of her unforced errors.

16:29 hrs IST

Excellent rally

First good rally of the match and Saina comes out on top. Saina hits the shuttle into the net but luckily for her it fell on the other half. Sindhu then wins the next two points and leads 10-9 in the first game.

16:26 hrs IST

Saina issues fightback

Saina is keeping a close distance with Sindhu as the point board suggests. Saina hits a smash into the body of Sindhu to get back in rhythm. Then Sindhu hits a serve out of the court and the first game is level at 5-5.

16:23 hrs IST

Sindhu takes early lead

PV Sindhu draws first blood as she wins the first point for the final. Saina then hits the shuttle out of the court and Sindhu doubles her advantage early on. Another unforced error gives Sindhu a 3-0 lead.

16:14 hrs IST

Match about to begin

PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal have made their way into the middle and the blockbuster contest is about to begin. They entered into the arena amid huge cheers from the crowd present at the venue in Guwahati.

16:06 hrs IST

Rematch of last season

The summit clash will see the two taking on each other in a rematch of the enthralling final that they played in the last edition. Last year, Saina edged Sindhu to take the crown and the top seed will look for an improved show against the former world number 1.

15:57 hrs IST

Road to final

While top seed PV Sindhu staved off a gutsy fightback from Assam’s wonderkid Ashmita Chaliha to secure a 21-10, 22-20 win, defending champion Saina Nehwal had it easier against Vaishnavi Bhale whom she beat 21-15, 21-14.

15:50 hrs IST

Clash between former champions

Saina, winner of the Nationals in 2006-07 and 2018, will aim for her fourth title and Sindhu will try to lay her hands on the coveted trophy after earlier triumphs in 2011 and 2013.

15:40 hrs IST

Hello and welcome

A very warm welcome to the live blog of the Senior National Badminton Championships Final between PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal. The two superstars will clash in Guwahati for the women’s singles title.