Marin’s injury will not make things easy, says P.V. Sindhu

Rio Olympics silver medalist says the top 15 players in the world are on the same level and one player's absence will not make a huge difference.

After opting out of the season’s first tournament Malaysia Masters due to a hectic schedule, P.V. Sindhu feels maintaining peak fitness will be key for Olympic qualification   -  PTI

Rio Olympics silver medalist P.V. Sindhu feels Carolina Marin's knee injury that ruled her out of action for six months will not make the upcoming tournaments a cakewalk.

“Even though Carolina is not playing, it is not going to be easy. There are very good players from China, Japan, Thailand. The top-15 ranked players are on the same level. Sometimes you might play brilliantly, give more than 100 percent, but might make few unforced errors. Sometimes your mind might not work, the strategy might not work,” Sindhu said, on the sidelines of Mission Sports, a sports education programme for schools across India.

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The Olympic silver medallist is confident of winning the World Championships, after losing two consecutive finals to Nozomi Okuhara (2017) and Carolina Marin (2018). “Yes, last two times it was silver. I am hopeful of winning the gold this time. It is one of the biggest tournaments and nobody is going to give it away easily. It is just about giving my best,” she said.

After opting out of the season’s first tournament Malaysia Masters due to a hectic schedule, Sindhu feels maintaining peak fitness will be key for Olympic qualification, which will be announced on April 30, 2019. “The qualification phase is a crucial period, so we need to pick and choose tournaments. We need to be keen on how we play and rectify our mistakes.

“Everybody is aiming for Tokyo 2020 and there are many good players and its not going to be easy,” Sindhu said.

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The BWF has made it mandatory for top-ranked shuttlers to play at least 12 BWF tournaments per season. On deciding the tournaments to play, Sindhu said that it is up to the coach and the player in deciding workload. “It depends whether you are able to give your 100 percent or not. For me, every tournament is to give it my all. It is not about just participating and coming back. It is about discussing the situation with the coach and picking the tournaments.”

Even though Carolina Marin is out for six months due to a knee injury she suffered in the Malaysia Masters, P.V. Sindhu feels it is not easy as there are very good players from China, Japan, Thailand and says the top-15 ranked players are on the same level.   -  AP

Sindhu, alongside World No. 9 Saina Nehwal, will play the National Badminton Championships from February 10-16, at Guwahati.  “I think we get to see a lot of young players and previously I have seen that there are many youngsters who have good skills. It will be a good opportunity for them to play against us and us getting to see them. I think the Nationals will help us to see the standard of badminton in India.”

Following her medal win at the 2016 Rio Olympics, Sindhu's brand value has witnessed a surge. In August 2018, she was ranked seventh among Forbes’ list of world’s highest-paid female athletes with earnings of $8.5 million.“A lot of people congratulated me for being on the list. A big thanks to people who supported and sponsored me. I wouldn’t say it is a burden for me, but I am enjoying it,” the 23-year old said.

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