IOC Lifetime Achievement Award huge boost for badminton, says Gopi Chand

Indian chief national badminton coach P.Gopi Chand said that his IOC Coaches Lifetime Achievement Award is morale booster for Indian badminton.

"It is all the more special when you happen to be the first Indian to get it across all Olympic disciplines," Gopi Chand said.   -  V.V. Subrahmanyam

India’s chief national badminton coach, P. Gopi Chand, says it is a huge honour to be recognised by the International Olympic Committee which named him as one of the 2019 IOC Coaches Lifetime Achievement Award on Saturday.

“Well, this award coming across Winter and Summer Olympics and from the fact that there were so many illustrious coaches in so many disciplines across the globe is something which means a huge, huge recognition for me,"  Gopi Chand told Sportstar.

“It is all the more special when you happen to be the first Indian to get it across all Olympic disciplines. It is a great feeling no doubt,” the 46-year-old former All England champion said.

“Frankly, I think this is not just a recognition for me but for all the coaches of India. And coming in the Olympic year, it is a huge morale booster to badminton itself even while motivating many more to set new goals,” he added.

READ | Sindhu, Lakshya steer Indian badminton in 2019

Gopi Chand has the distinction of producing India's first Olympics medallist in badminton when his trainee Saina Nehwal won the 2012 London Games bronze and then saw P.V. Sindhu bag a silver in the 2016 Rio Olympics besides being crowned world champion last year.

“I must thank the Government of India, Sports Authority of India, Badminton Association of India which have been so supportive in me discharging my duties as the chief national coach. But for them it would not have been possible,” Gopichand said.

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