I remember we were going to Spain for the Olympic qualification against China when I got a call from my parents. I could sense something was not right and they seemed to be really worried. I assured them that I am safe along with the other members and that we are taking necessary precautions. But yes, it was a little scary to see the coronavirus spread in such rapid pace.
To be honest, the lockdown has had a bearing on me mentally as when it first started, I was like, “Okay, it will be just a week or more.”
But as days progressed, we saw Lockdown 2.0, 3.0 and 4.0. It was unexpected, but COVID-19 is so dangerous that these measures had to be in place.
Everything was shut all of a sudden and it took me a while to adjust to the fact that sport is not happening anytime soon and I am not stepping on the court soon.
Till recently, I was just not getting motivated as there is still no clarity on how things will unfold. There are no immediate tournaments and the academy is also closed. So yes, it’s difficult to get motivated, but thankfully I spoke to Gopi sir (national coach P. Gopi Chand) and he had some really encouraging words. That kind of gave me comfort.
I hope this period of time passes soon. Somewhere deep down, I have the guilty feeling of not training in a full-fledged way, but these are testings times which are out of my control.
I miss being on the court and I feel it will be different once we resume training. We require a lot of support to get back into rhythm and it will be challenging as there will be rules to follow and we can’t take them lightly.
I don’t think the coronavirus pandemic will have a bearing on future tournaments as they all are important and a way to conduct them will be worked out. I am open to training in a small group as we know each other well. But ya, I am a little circumspect when it comes to training in large numbers.
As told to V. S. Aravind.
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