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Sindhu keeps clean slate, Sameer too qualifies for KO

PV Sindhu hits a return against Zhang Beiwen of the United States during their third round match at the BWF World Tour Finals in Guangzhou, on Friday.
 GUANGZHOU, Dec 14: Olympic silver medallist PV Sindhu continued her unbeaten run while debutant Sameer Verma also qualified for the knockout stage with a straight-game win in his last Group B match at the BWF World Tour Finals, here on Friday.

Playing her third successive year-ending finale, Sindhu dished out some deceptive strokes and showed precision during the 35-minute contest to prevail over World No. 12 Beiwen Zhang 21-9, 21-15 in an one-sided women’s singles contest to top Group A.

“I was down 2-6 initially but I picked up the lead, so after that I was fine,” Sindhu, the last edition’s runner-up, said after the match.

“I have played a few matches against her after the Indian Open final, so I took it as a fresh match,” said the 23-year-old referring to her Indian Open final loss to Zhang at New Delhi early this year.

“I am happy with the three wins, it is a positive thing. I hope to move forward with the same positivity and do well in the semifinals,” added Sindhu, who won all the three matches of her group.

On the adjacent court, 24-year-old Sameer showed great athleticism and produced a masterful performance to demolish Thailand’s Kantaphon Wangcharoen 21-9, 21-18 in a match that clocked 44 minutes.

After losing the opening match to World No. 1 and world champion Kento Momota, Sameer, who qualified for the tournament after defending his title at Syed Modi International last month, recovered well to come up trumps against his other two opponents in Group B.

“I have played him before at Swiss Open so I knew how to go about it. In the second game I was losing so after some advice from my coach, I kept my patience and now I am ready to play the semifinals,” said Sameer.

“It has been a great experience playing my first world tour finals.” – PTI

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