Saina Nehwal had a grueling semifinal tie versus China's HE Bingjiao to proceed further to the summit clash of the ongoing Indonesia Masters. Recently-married Saina had a good Malaysia Masters but she succumed in the semifinal stage. Hence, all eyes were on her but she was the better player in a thrilling contest to win 18-21, 21-12, 21-18.
Saina, like mentioned in previous articles, was tentative starter. She was behind but levelled things at 6-6 and was down 7-10 at halfway stage. From thereon, Bingjiao upped her game and ran past Saina to lead 16-10. It again became 18-18 but Bingjiao held her nerves to prevail in the opening game.
Saina dominated terms to lead 10-3 in the second game. Bingjiao conceded the momentum big time and didn't post much threat infront of her opponent. As a result, Saina came back into the contest and won the penultimate game 21-12.
The third game was a replica of the first one. Only this time, it was Saina who was ahead from the onset. While Bingjiao made a match out of it, after being 4-9 down, Saina seemed to have learnt from her past errors. From 16-16, Saina won few crucial points, made inroads in few long rallies and propelled Bingjiao to work hard on court.
Saina has entered 2019 on a positive note, and will be eager to clinch the title.
In match statistics, Saina led 9-7 in most consecutive points won. She was ahead 3-1 in game points won. In total points played (111), she led 60-51.
About the Author
Aditya Sahay, a former cricket reporter/writer and statistician, has shifted gears to other sports (primarily badminton, tennis, kabaddi, hockey, golf etc). While cricket remains his first love, he enjoys covering and writing on kabaddi, hockey and tennis. He dons Germanys jersey during FIFA and believes Dhoni Dhoni hai, isko (aur) mauka mila toh bahut aage jayega