Kidambi Srikanth opens up about his Thomas Cup celebrations

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Top India shuttler Kidambi Srikanth has won a number of important titles in his career, but it's not often that the normally reticent badminton ace yells with happiness and smashes his racket on the badminton court. However, the Thomas Cup showed us a side of him we had never seen before.

Srikanth, who admits to remaining cool following triumphs, told, "It was a little out of control." “The energy that day from the crowd and the dugout drew that celebration out.” In the final, India played 14-time champions Indonesia, a squad that had gone undefeated until the title game.

Once Lakshya Sen and Chirag Shetty-Satwiksairaj Rankireddy put India ahead 2-0, it was up to Kidambi Srikanth, a former world No. 1 and India's captain at the Thomas Cup 2022, to seal the victory and deny a dangerous Indonesian team a route back into the game. In his last match, Kidambi Srikanth faced a higher-ranked Jonatan Christie and was a picture of concentration the whole match till the winning point was struck. Srikanth then let free before being joined by his colleagues who were cheering him on.

“It was a very close match that could have decided everything for Team India.” Kidambi Srikanth, the world No. 11 who defeated Christie to write a piece of Indian sporting history, remarked, "I really had to win." Kidambi defeated Jonatan Christie 21-15 in the first game but was forced to his limitations in the second. Kidambi Srikanth defeated Jonatan Christie 23-21 to win India's first Thomas Cup.

“Six months back nobody would have thought India would win Thomas Cup… Just the pressure of that match, that championship, I think got those emotions out,” Kidambi Srikanth said.

“If anyone is really thinking about it, it should happen because this is a very big win for India in badminton,” Kidambi Srikanth, a great movie enthusiast himself, remarked when asked if a film about India's Thomas Cup triumph might be created.

On a slightly different note, Kidambi Srikanth said that aspiring filmmakers should think about the players to themselves perform their parts. “We have gone through the emotions ourselves, so I feel we should be the ones who get to play our roles.” After the historic Thomas Cup triumph in Thailand, Srikanth said that the team received a congratulations letter from SS Rajamouli, the director of the blockbuster Baahubali films.

Srikanth grinned and said, “Maybe I should bring up the idea of a possible movie to him the next time I meet him.” Srikanth, a silver medalist at the World Championships, believes India has the requisite players to win all the badminton gold medals at the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham. “The players who are part of the team have the capacity to win gold medals.”

The biggest difficulty for Indian players, according to Kidambi Srikanth, would be maintaining consistency throughout the competition. “These big events are kind of two-week-long tournaments. So if we manage to stay consistent for around 15 days, I definitely feel we have the right team to go and win.”

While the Commonwealth Games will take center stage this year, Srikanth revealed that his long-term objective would be to clinch the gold medal for India in the 2024 Olympics in Paris. “I really want to do well at the Commonwealth Games and then the World Championships…But my target is to win gold at the Paris 2024,” Srikanth, who was unable to fly to Tokyo for the 2020 Olympics, added.



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