While India is rejoicing over P.V. Sindhu’s stunning win at Basel, it should not forget that the country has loads of sportspersons laden with world class talent that is lying untapped. What it needs is world class training infrastructure and adequate coaching facilities (“Anand Mahindra shares video on PV Sindhu’s fitness regime,” Aug.27, Gulf Today).
The newly crowned world champion and the star shuttler Sindhu who made India proud by becoming the first Indian to win gold at BWF World Championships said “hard work is the key to success”, after her stupendous victory. It has been the formula behind the Hyderabad shuttler’s success. But alongside hard work she was also fortunate to have the right support by way of training facilities and coaches. And that is what the rest of our star athletes need, be it Hima Das or Manu Bhaker etc, etc.
Sindhu rightly credited her fitness trainer Srikanth Verma along with coaches Kim Ji Hyun and Pullela Gopichand for the victory. With her victory, she has served a reminder that any athlete can rise to the top if the player gets the right support and backing.
India seems to be in the midst of a golden era as far badminton goes, because apart from Sindhu, we also had Sai Praneeth who won a bronze in the men’s category, the first medal for India in 36 years.
Will the new badminton world champion be a source of inspiration for women shuttlers? She should be. Because we have just two — Sindhu and Saina Nehwal — in the top 60 of the BWF World rankings, while it is a little better in the men’s division. There are seven in the top 50. What all this means is that the upcoming athletes need to be given a boost. India needs to capitalise now. Of course Gopichand and his academy deserve full credit.