Pullela Gopichand has believed in me from day one, says Kidambi Srikanth

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Pullela Gopichand has believed in me from day one, says Kidambi Srikanth

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SportsCafe Desk

11/10/2017

Kidambi Srikanth has thanked Pullela Gopichand for his continuous support by stating that he believed in him from day one which helped him to show a terrific performance this year. Srikanth has also added that the Indians have a tough mindset and aim to beat the best in the world.

With the help of the French Open victory, Srikanth became the first Indian badminton player, male or female, to grab four Superseries titles in a single calendar year. This win also helped him reach a career-best second place in the BWF World rankings and for that, he credited his coach Pullela Gopichand.

“I feel he is the best coach and I am very happy to train under him. Without him, this couldn’t have been possible. As a player, he has always wanted me to go out there and enjoy my game. He never puts any kind of pressure on players. When I was playing I didn’t have any other thoughts other than giving my best. I owe my wins to him. He is the one who has believed in me from day one. He has worked for me as hard as I did for myself. I think joining the academy (Gopichand’s) was a big turning point and it was his decision to shift me to singles. It all changed from there,” Srikanth told TOI.

In the recent past, Indian shuttlers have made their way in the big platforms by going neck-to-neck with the foreign players. Kidambi felt that, now, there is no difference between Indian and foreign players when it comes to their mindset and training.

“No, I don’t see any difference. Indians have a tough mindset like foreign players and aim to beat the best in the world. Our training regime is quite similar to any foreign player,” he said.

Srikanth continued his brilliant journey in the Superseries events as he defeated Japan's Kenta Nishimoto 21-14, 21-13 in the French Open final to become the first Indian to win the French Open title. The 24-year-old also opined that if Indian players continue to impress with their good result then it will help to increase the fan base in the country.

“We are growing as a sport and if we can consistently produce results from now on then there’s nothing like it. It is important to be consistent in big events and we definitely have a good chance. I think overall badminton is improving in the country. The singles and doubles players are winning tournaments for the country at the international level. So, I feel that it is a good sign. Rest assured, we will get many more wins in badminton,” the Guntur boy said.

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