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Tokyo Olympics 2020: PV Sindhu wins her opening match with ease against Israel's Ksenia Polikarpova

11:23 PM Jul 25, 2021 | Agencies

Tookyo: Reigning world champion P V Sindhu had an emphatic opener, thrashing Israel's Ksenia Polikarpova in straight games in the women's singles group J match here on Sunday. The 26-year-old Indian, seeded sixth, beat the 58th ranked Polikarpova 21-7 21-10 in a lop-sided match.

"Even though it was an easy first match I didn't take it easy. It wasn't like I wasn't prepared. Every time, it is very important to be focused and be prepared for every single point in every single match," Sindhu said after the match.

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The world number seven will next play Hong Kong's world number 34 Cheung Ngan Yi in the group stage.

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The Rio Games silver medallist started on an attacking note but briefly found herself trailing 3-4. However, she moved ahead quickly with Polikarpova making unforced errors. Sindhu entered the break with 11-5 lead.

Soon, she was on a roll, grabbing 13 straight points. The Indian used her trademark straight and cross court smashes and drops to trouble the Israeli, who couldn't utilise the few opportunities that came her way.

Polikarpova, who was playing with a strapped knee, continued to struggle with her strokes as Sindhu opened up a 9-3 lead in the second game and then entered the mid-interval with a massive seven-point advantage.

It was business as well after the break, with Sindhu riding on the errors of her opponent.

She said she has worked on her aggression in the past five years and promised a very "different" version of herself. The 26-year-old from Hyderabad is India's biggest hope for a gold at Tokyo.

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