Two-time Olympic medallist and ace shuttler PV Sindhu was on cloud nine after clinching the Syed Modi International Badminton title in Lucknow on Sunday.
Talking to Fazal Khan, Sindhu expressed happiness over her performance over the week and termed her quarterfinal win over Thailand’s Supanida Katethong as “sweet revenge” as she had lost against her in the recent India Open tournament. Excerpts:
Congratulations on your success in Syed Modi International. How was your experience?
Thanks a lot. Overall, it was a great experience. It was a good week and all the matches went off well. During my matches with compatriots, I found that great talent is coming up. Even Bansod played very well in the finals. My match against Supanida also came as a sweet revenge as she had defeated me in the India Open.
What do you have to say about young players? How do you see the future of Indian badminton at the international level?
The future of Indian badminton is certainly bright. A lot of young talented players are coming up on the international arena. There was definitely a gap and not many players came up after Saina Nehwal and I started playing, but things are looking up now. The government and BAI (Badminton Association of India) are supporting young players a lot and the encouragement will yield positive results.
How has your journey been over the years?
I started off under coaches Mohammad Ali and Mehboob Ali. After that I played for a couple of years under a lot of coaches. Currently, I am practising with Mr Park (Park Tae-Sang) in Gachibowli Stadium (Hyderabad). I am thankful to all my coaches as all of them had their unique way of thinking, strategy and skills which helped me improve my game over the years. I am also thankful to my parents (who themselves have been volleyball players) for their constant encouragement.
Dealing with the challenges emanating from Covid pandemic situation must be really tough for sportspersons. How do you cope with the “bio-bubble situation” and strict protocol?
We have to take care of ourselves. Living under Covid shadow and following precautions is the new normal. Bio-bubble is here to stay and we have to wear masks, use sanitizer and follow social distancing. It is also a good thing that wherever we go, organizers are also taking precautions.
What’s next on your mind?
We have Commonwealth Games and Asian Games lined up this year, so preparations are on for it. We have a busy schedule this year so I hope that I keep performing well in all the tournaments. I want to get a medal.
What do you like about Lucknow?
Lucknow has developed a lot so far as sports infrastructure is concerned. I have come across many talented players from Lucknow. I also love Lucknow’s ‘biryani’ and ‘tundey kebabs’, though I couldn’t have it this time.
Your advice to junior players…
There is no substitute for hard work. If one keeps performing well, rankings do improve and the player also moves up the ladder.

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