PV Sindhu’s poor form continued when she lost to China’s Zhang Yi Man of China 17-21 11-21 on Wednesday at the All England Championships. This is the third time that she has lost her first round match this year, losing to Carolina Marin in Malaysia in January and then exiting the Indian Open later that same month.
After the latest loss, Sindhu said that she was still struggling to find her rhythm after coming back from the left ankle injury that had kept her sidelined after the 2022 Commonwealth Games.
“It’s fine now but it’s taking me time to find my rhythm. It’s just the rhythm, you need to get it and then you’ll be there. It’s just my third tournament this year. I’m a bit sad, but it’s important to bounce back,” the World No 9 told the BWF website.
“It was a hairline fracture on my left ankle. I stopped after the Commonwealth Games, it took me time because I was immobile. This is my second major injury, the first one was in 2015 and took me six months. You need to get the rhythm, it takes time mentally even though you are fit,” she added.
Sindhu had recently parted ways with her coach Park Tae-sang of Korea, under whose guidance she won a bronze at the Tokyo Olympics.
Sindhu was rusty and subdued throughout the match with her world number 17 opponent showing more agility and attacking intent.
There was not much to differentiate initially between the two who had 1-1 head-to-head record before Wednesday’s match.
Sindhu led 6-5 and then made it 16-13. But the Chinese shuttler won seven straight points to lead 20-16 before taking the first game in 21 minutes.
In the second game, the two players were tied 5-5 but Sindhu committed a few unforced errors and was soon down 5-10.
Sindhu recovered a bit to trail 7-11 but was soon down 9-16 before losing the second game and the match.