The 2016 silver medalist said that she doesn’t feel any added pressure ahead of the quadrennial event in Tokyo.

With the Tokyo Olympics in proximity, the preparations of all Indian athletes for the mega event are in full swing. Among the four Indian shuttlers to qualify for the event, PV Sindhu will spearhead the women’s singles challenge. She will be heading into the Olympics as one of the favorites and India’s strongest medal hope. 

Apart from Sindhu, world championship bronze medalist Sai Praneeth and the young duo of Saitwik Sairaj and Chirag Shetty are the other shuttlers to make it to the Olympics

In a virtual press interaction with SAI, PV Sindhu added that it was unfortunate for Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth to miss out on the Olympic berths due to the cancellation of the Singapore Open. “We are in such a situation you never know what’s going to happen and when the tournaments are going to get cancelled or when they are going to happen. If they(Saina and Srikanth) had played in a couple of tournaments, they would have been closer to qualifying. The pandemic has left us with very few choices,” Sindhu said.

“Obviously, if they had made it, it would have been good for our Indian contingent. There would have been so many players going for the Olympics. But it’s sad that they did not get selected,” added PV Sindhu.

The Olympic silver medalist also acknowledged that she doesn’t feel added pressure but there is a lot of expectation and responsibility. Notably, her sole focus would be on performing her best at the tournament. 

“There is nothing like pressure. Back then in 2016, it was my first time and it was a completely different atmosphere. I did not know how it was going to be. Playing for a second time, expectations and responsibilities are a lot more. I just want to play, go out there and give my 100 percent. I have to focus and give my best ,” said PV Sindhu.

Olympics postponement has given more time to improve skillset 

PV Sindhu is currently training at the Gachibowli stadium as the stadium gives a feeling of an international arena. Training there has helped her simulate match situations and understand how to control the shuttle. Moreover, she also added by saying that training under her coach, Park Tae Sang has helped her improve mentally as well as physically. 

In the last couple of tournaments, Sindhu’s best performance was in reaching the finals of the Swiss Open which she eventually lost to Carolina Marin. However, she affirmed that she has made the best use of the time available due to the postponement to develop her techniques and skills. 

“It’s good that I have got so much time, generally we go for tournaments and come back, rectify mistakes and then again go for tournaments. So we don’t have much time to learn new techniques or skills. You are going to take time to learn new techniques. This was a really good time and I have used it. I hope in the Olympics, there will be some new skills.”

Furthermore, Sindhu applauded the support provided by the government authorities to all athletes in these tough situations. The Olympic hopeful is positive about the Tokyo Olympics taking place safely by following all the protocols. 

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