“National title will spur me to do better” - The New Indian Express

“National title will spur me to do better”

Published: 14th October 2012 10:47 AM

Last Updated: 14th October 2012 10:47 AM

In a comeback of sorts, Sayali Gokhale reg­ained the women’s national title that she won way back in the 2008-09 season. The 25-year-old stunned world number 24 PV Sindhu in the three-game final at Srinagar. “Winning the national title is always a proud moment for any player. I won it for the second time and this time I won against PV Sindhu, who and has beaten an Olympic champion,” said Sayali. Despite being short on participation in tournaments since January, Sayali worked on her skills and fitness to emerge the best player of the national championship. “This title me­ans a lot to me. Beating Sindhu has given me a lot of confidence,” she added. Excerpts from an interview...

On the paucity of national-level tournaments

There should be more national tournaments where players can get match expos­ure. Although players are getting to play in internatio­nal tournaments now, it is important that there are mo­re tournaments at home. Playing in domestic circuits gi­ves them confidence to play in international tournaments. It is a platform to bigger tournaments.

On Saina Nehwal

Saina Nehwal has taken the game to a new high. Her sincerity and hard work has made her one of the top players in the world. She has brought new confidence into Indian badminton. She has changed the mindset of Indian players. All the players in the country look up to her for inspiration.

On the badminton scenario in India

I think in future more players from our country could challenge the best players of the world. We have the talent and we have to groom them into international players.

On upcoming tournaments her future plans

I will be playing in the Swedish League for one season from September to April where I can get good match pr­actice and be able to play in few international tournaments there. This national title has given me new confidence and a new lease of life. I’m aware it is a big challenge to survive in international events. It is totally a different ball-game. I’ve to work hard to improve my game. I’ve to attack more and improve my defence.

On the growth of PV Sindhu as a player

Sindhu is an upcoming player and is still very young.

On sponsorship & ads for badminton players

There should be more sponsorships at the ground-level. Yo­ung players need the support. To be honest, Saina has sh­own the way.

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