Sindhu says World Championships title is my answer to people who questioned me over and over

Sindhu became India's first badminton world champion when she beat Japan's Nozomi Okuhara in final

Sindhu — no more a 'silver girl'

Dubbed "silver girl" for a string of near-misses on the international stage, PV Sindhu became India's first badminton world champion when she beat Japan's Nozomi Okuhara 21-7 21-7 to win the title.

The victory has boosted the nation's hopes of an Olympic gold medal in Tokyo next year.

After finishing runner-up at the 2016 Olympics, last year's Commonwealth Games and Asian Games and the previous two world championships finals, Sindhu was delighted to stand on top of the podium.

(Photograph:AFP)

'This is my answer to people': Sindhu

"This is my answer to the people who have asked me questions over and over. I just wanted to answer with my racket and with this win — that's all."

Sindhu played in five other finals last year without winning any of them, raising questions about her mental strength.

In Switzerland, however, she removed any doubts about her game, raining down one ferocious smash after another on Okuhara to finish the match in 38 minutes.

(Photograph:AFP)

Sindhu's fifth world championship medal

This is Sindhu's fifth world championship medal, two of them silvers and two of them bronze. 

She matches the record of China's Zhang Ning with five world championship medals, after the now-retired former Olympic champion also won one gold, two silver and two bronze during her career.

Prakash Padukone was the first Indian to win a world championships medal with men's singles bronze in 1983, while Saina Nehwal bagged women's singles silver and bronze in 2015 and 2017.

(Photograph:Reuters)

Won it for country

Sindhu said she won it for her country as her long-awaited maiden world title sparked jubilation back home.

"I won it for my country and I am very proud being an Indian," an ecstatic Sindhu said after the match.

"I have no words to express, because I have been waiting for so long. Last time, it was silver, before that it was silver and finally I am a world champion so I am really really happy."

(Photograph:AFP)

PM Modi congratulated Sindhu

"The stupendously talented @Pvsindhu1 makes India proud again! Congratulations to her for winning the Gold at the BWF World Championships," Prime Minister Narendra Modi wrote on Twitter. 

(Photograph:Reuters)

One of world's highest-earning female athletes

The Olympic silver medallist has a large following in India where her success has brought her a number of endorsements, making her one of the world's highest-earning female athletes.

With an income of $5.5 million, mostly endorsements, Sindhu was rated by Forbes magazine as this year's joint-13th highest earner — the only badminton player in the tennis-dominated list, and the only Indian.

(Photograph:AFP)