Srikanth aims for Olympic gold

"The Olympic medal, that’s the ultimate goal for me this year," Srikanth, the highest ranked Indian male badminton player, has said.

K. Srikanth has had a fruitful start to the year so far in the badminton circuit, with the titles at Malaysia Masters and Syed Modi International Badminton Championships Grand Prix Gold.   -  PTI

Kidambi Srikanth, the top-ranking male Indian shuttler who put up an impressive performance in the Badminton Asia Team Championships here, says he aims to achieve a medal in the coming Rio Olympics.

“As early as possible, but I am not in a hurry to do that (achieve number one rank in world rankings). It’s just that I need to perform consistently. Then, I will automatically get that. I don’t want to become number one (immediately). I want to perform really very well. That’s when I can be there (at the top),” the 23-year-old shuttler told PTI here.

Srikanth, who is currently ranked nine in the world, led the Indian team to semifinals of the Badminton Asia Team Championships. He was the only one to win a match in the five-match tie in the semifinals against Indonesia yesterday. Srikanth remained unbeaten in the tournament.

'I need to work hard'

He said he doesn’t think much about expectations. “I don’t think much about the expectations. I would like to win. To win, I need to work hard. That’s obvious. So, I am just working hard,” he said.

Srikanth, who reached the semifinals of Malaysia Masters tournament and won the Syed Modi International Badminton Championships Grand Prix Gold this year, said his aim for the year is to win a medal in the Olympics. “The Olympic medal, that’s the ultimate goal for me this year,” he said.

Srikanth, who trains at the Pullela Gopichand Academy here, said the chief national coach is the best he has seen and that he would like to improve himself by working hard.