He is six weeks shy of turning 41, but A. Sharath Kamal - the grand old torch-bearer of India’s table tennis - is looking forward to the return of Ultimate Table Tennis (UTT) with an eye on not just the Asian Games later this year but also the Paris Olympics in 2024.
“Asian Games is the immediate target but the main goal for Team India is the Paris Olympics. When UTT starts, the countdown would be down to 12 months, for me personally that’s when the preparation starts,” Sharath said on the sidelines of the UTT Player Draft.
“As for the Asian Games, we are already into the final leg, the preparation is done with. We just have to get into the best physical and mental shape. As for the preparation front, UTT will help us start the preparation for the Olympic Games.”
Sharath’s home franchise, Chennai Lions, with a new set of owners, will be looking forward to drawing inspiration from the Chennai Super Kings to defend its title. No wonder then that Sharath joked that he doesn’t want anything to be different in UTT than its last edition in 2019.
“I don’t want it to be different. I just want to win the title. Season Three was very good. Not just because my team, Chennai Lions won it but also because the format was very interesting,” Sharath said.
“The kind of following table tennis had that particular season showed we were growing as a sport. And the Indian team’s performances kept on improving in that period. So I am looking forward to this season creating the same buzz, not just with the players but also with the spectators, people who engage with the sport and with the youngsters who pick table tennis- either as a hobby or a competitive activity. For all of them, UTT Season 4 will be fantastic.”
- Pakistan vs Sri Lanka LIVE Score, Asia Cup 2023 Super 4: PAK, SL eye final spot in virtual semifinal clash
- National Games 2023: Selvam Karthi to be part of Tamil Nadu team
- Stokes says he always planned to play at World Cup
- Australia makes neck guards mandatory against pace bowlers
- Pakistan vs Sri Lanka LIVE Colombo weather updates, Asia Cup 2023: Will rain affect PAK vs SL match today?