P. V. Sindhu: My target in Tokyo is to come back with a gold

Sindhu says being India's flag-bearer during the Games will be a proud moment in her career.

P. V. Sindhu...“You have to be composed and stay away from any sort of distractions to realise your goal.” - AP

World champion P. V. Sindhu believes next month's Tokyo Olympics will be different than the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro and has asserted that she is ready to cope with the pressure of expectations.

“Every time I enter the court in any major event, the expectations are always that I come back with a medal. It is not that easy. But, I have to deal with it by staying focussed on the game on the given day,” Sindhu said during a Zoom interaction organised by the TedXYouth Suchitra Academy, themed 'Pause, Reset The Way You Think', on Saturday.

“You have to be composed and stay away from any sort of distractions to realise your goal. And obviously, my target is to come back with a gold,” said a smiling Sindhu.

“Yes, it will be a great honour to be the flag-bearer of the Indian contingent at the Tokyo Olympics. This is something which you don’t get that easily. It will be a proud moment in my career for sure. Thrilled to get this honour,” Sindhu said.

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Commenting on the preparations for Tokyo Games, the champion shuttler said they were different than usual because of the restrictions.

“I have been exclusively training at Gachibowli Indoor Stadium under [South] Korean coach Park Tae Sang with sparring partners from Suchitra Academy and the preparations are going really well in simulated match conditions which are similar to the badminton venue in Tokyo for the Olympics,” she explained.

“Every day I have been training with different sets of sparring partners - ranging from southpaws to aggressive to defensive players thanks to Mr Praveen Raju and Pradeep Raju of Suchitra Academy. The sessions have always been a mix of different combinations like one-vs-two or one vs three match-plays,” she said.

P. V. Sindhu undergoing fitness training in the company of her trainer M. Srikanth Varma at the Suchitra Academy in Hyderabad. - V. V. SUBRAHMANYAM


“I am grateful to the Sports Authority of India, Badminton Association of India, Government of Telangana for immediately accepting my request to train at Gachibowli and extending all the facilities for my training," she said.

Sindhu suggested to the young players upset with cancellations of events to keep their morale high.

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“Since there are so many Academies, it should be a good idea to have inter-academy matches to have that feel and also make a critical assessment of one's strengths and weaknesses and accordingly improve,” Sindhu said.

Looking back further, Sindhu said she always took pride in displaying her never-say-die attitude and loves to put her heart and soul into her game. “There was a phase when I got injured during a practice session. People started to write me off. But I resumed training with a cast for five months thanks to the support of my parents,” she said.

“When you lose a game or go through such a phase your confidence might be shaken. But it can’t be a full-stop. You have to think you can do it, believe in yourself. You have to reset your goals and work hard to achieve them despite the challenges,” Sindhu said.

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