Olympic bronze medallist shuttler Saina Nehwal on her arrival at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport Shamshabad near Hyderabad on Tuesday. (PTI)
Badminton star Saina Nehwal, back home
with an Olympic medal, said the bronze she won in London will motivate her to
be the best in the world and get a gold in the 2016 Rio Summer Games.
"I am proud of myself. I went to London with a belief of winning a medal
and I was able to achieve what. An Olympic medal was the reason started playing
at the age of nine," said Saina Tuesday at the felicitation ceremony
organised in her honour.
Saina became the first Indian badminton player and second woman from the
country to win an Olympic medal when her opponent Wang Xin of China pulled out
of the bronze medal play-off due to a knee injury.
The 22-year-old said she was lucky to win the bronze but she was optimistic
about her chances ever since she won back-to-back titles in Thailand and
Indonesia in the run-up to the Olympics.
"I beat all the top players during that time and things were working for
me. In Indonesia, I beat the player (Li Xuerui) who beat Wang Yihan to win the
gold in London. So I was really confident about my chances going into the
Olympics," said the world no. 5.
Recollecting how she felt standing on an Olympic podium, Saina said: "It
was an unbelievable feeling. I was thinking of all the years of training and
hard work I put for winning an Olympic medal. It has motivated me to be the
best in the World and do better in Rio."