P. V. Sindhu on her 2016 Rio Olympics medal: I won the silver, I didn’t lose the gold!

At the end of it, one player should win and one should lose. I have taken it in a very positive way.

The best part of Rio was obviously getting a medal for the country and standing on the podium.   -  PTI

I just can’t believe it has already been five years – such a wonderful and fantastic journey that I never expected. My live has changed a lot after that silver medal at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

When I think back, it was something new. The expectations are a lot more now to give my best and stay focused. Since then, my game has improved a lot, and I’ve learnt a lot more things.

The best part of Rio was obviously getting a medal for the country and standing on the podium. Nothing can beat that or be as good as that. I was on cloud nine. It took a while for that achievement to sink in. After that, I gained a lot of confidence and motivation game-wise, on court and off court.

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That was my first Olympics, so I didn’t know how and what it was going to be like. The environment was so different. I had met a couple of athletes from other disciplines earlier and it was nice to interact with them in the Games Village. It was nice to play against some top-level players later on in my discipline.

I really enjoyed the whole atmosphere. But again, once back in the room, the focus was on my game and how I should give my best.

In the final, it was anybody’s game. I was leading 11-10 in the decider when Carolina Marin took a couple of points and led overall to clinch the gold.

At the end of it, one player should win and one should lose. I have taken it in a very positive way. I had to be happy. Yes, if you lose, you will be upset. But the feeling I got when I was standing on the podium was different — I won the silver and I didn’t lose the gold!

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There were no excuses. We got enough time to recover. Draw-wise every match was important from the first round and beating Michelle Li in the preliminary phase was the most decisive moment when I look back because it gave me the desired momentum and confidence. This was evident in the way I beat some big names like Tai Tzu-ying, Wang Yihan, Nozomi Okuhara before losing to Marin.

I am looking to change the colour of the medal in Tokyo. I’m really working hard and wish to come back with the gold.

As told to V. V. Subrahmanyam

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