It was a case of so near, yet so far. PV Sindhu lost to Spain’s Carolina Marin in the finals of the individual badminton event at Rio 2016, securing herself a silver medal. India will have to wait for its second individual gold medalist since Abhinav Bindra had won gold in Beijing in 2008.
Sindhu was always the underdog coming into the match against world number one Marin. In the first game, Marin had initially jumped to a 11-6 lead against the Indian player, before Sindhu made a stunning comeback to win 21-19. In the second game, Marin dominated, reaching a 13-4 lead before winning 21-12. Marin won the last set 21-15.
Sindhu had a remarkable journey to the finals, having beaten higher ranked players, including Li Xuerui and world no. 2 Wang Yihan. She’s the only second badminton player to secure a medal at the Olympics. Saina Nehwal had won India a bronze in London in 2012.
The 21-year old Sindhu is a resident of Hyderabad and trained at P. Gopichand’s badminton academy. Her parents are both volleyball players, and her father was awarded the Arjuna award in 2000. Previously, Sindhu had won bronze at the 2014 Asian Games and had also won a bronze at the Commonwealth games. She was ranked 10th in the world coming into the Olympics.