P.V. Sindhu enjoyed a momentous high at a very young age when she won bronze at this year’s BWF World Championships. Since then, not only have there been more people following her, watching her every step of the way at the various tournaments, there’s also the added pressure and comparison with India’s No.1 Saina Nehwal.
Sindhu realizes that life is only going to get tougher from here and speaking to TOI, shared her views ahead of the PSPB badminton tournament that she is taking part in.
“I should not take it easy from now on. It is getting tougher and tougher each day. There are experienced players, Saina (Nehwal), Tine Baun and the Chinese. I have just won once against them which doesn’t mean that I have an upper hand. They will be coming back. Every game and every match is very important for me. I need to focus on my game,” said Sindhu.
Sindhu had broken into the top 10 after her fine run at the World Championships, but she has now slipped back into 12th spot after a disappointing last few weeks. She vows to be back in the top 7 by the end of the year though.
“By the end of this year, I will surely get into top 10 and may be in top 7 or 8 by year end. It’s difficult to get into the top 5 and move up but I will surely work hard for that,” she said.
Asked if she sees herself as a world number one, Sindhu said: “I can’t say if I could be the number one in next two years. I can’t tell you the exact date and time and year but I will surely get there one day.”
Regarding the renewed attention on her, Sindhu exclaimed that she was fine with the added interest she generates these days.
“I am working on my defence. It is not my weak point but I need to improve more on defence. Life has changed after world championship. There is a lot of attention and it is good. I don’t get irritated, we need to be feel blessed and happy for that,” added Sindhu, who skipped the individual event of the PSPB Inter-unit championship.
Sindhu managed to get the better of veterans Tine Baun and Juliane Schenk in the recently concluded Indian Badminton League, but couldn’t get the better of Saina Nehwal, losing to her senior compatriot in both matches.
“I was playing for the first time against Saina. We never played any match in the academy. During training, she practiced strokes and all so it was the first time. I have learnt that she was attacking and didn’t give me chance to attack. She is an experienced player. She was aggressive.
“It happens sometimes that a person is leading and suddenly goes down. We really need to think and move on the next point. I am doing that but I need to do more,” she said.
On how she plans to tackle the top players in the world, now that she had made the climb up to the elite division, Sindhu said it would be tough but she is confident.
“My coach notes down the game of the players I am playing against. It is more about changing to the situation of the match. It is not like they know my game and so I can’t win. Coaches motivate us and I have confidence that I can do well. I don’t think it is easy to beat a player you have beaten before. It is actually tougher because they will know my game,” Sindhu said.
Much was expected of Sindhu at the Japan Open last week in the absence of Saina Nehwal, but she suffered a shock loss to a Japanese qualifier in the second round. Sindhu mentioned that it just wasn’t her day and that she was looking to get over the disappointment soon.
“I committed a lots of errors and mistakes, it was just not my day. She played really well. Sometimes it happens. It is not that I am playing negative always. Someday we play brilliantly and sometimes it’s nothing. I felt that I could have won. I have been practicing a lot.”