I almost quit badminton last year: Saina Nehwal

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World Championship silver medalist badminton player, Saina Nehwal said that she almost decided to quit the game last year after a series of poor performance.

Saina said that her decision to change base to Bangalore under her new coach Vimal Kumar proved a masterstroke helping her not only regain her confidence but also prolong her career.

“It really really helped (decision to shift to Bangalore) and everyone can see that. A lot has changed since then. I have changed as a person. As of now I have become World no. 1, won China and India Open, reached the finals of All England and World Championships. All these happened only as I moved to Bangalore,” she told NDTV.

She added, “it was a move from Hyderabad but I did it because I wanted to improve and I think it was a good decision. Vimal Sir’s influence is the biggest change. I really want to thank him for spending so much time with me in the court and making me believe everyday that I am a champion, I can be number one.”

Saina, who had always trained under the national coach Pullela Gopichand, left his academy in Hyderabad to train under her new coach Vimal Kumar ahead of the Asian Games last year.

She said, “Even physically I am feeling much better. It’s because, when you get personal attention you are naturally going to improve. The whole attention is on you. He is working on areas in which I am weak.”

 

Saina says that she is now focusing her efforts on next year’s Rio Olympics.

“It’s (World Championship medal) one of the special medals because it is going to give me lot more confidence to be ready for the Olympics. That is for sure. Olympics will have the same players coming in. Olympics come every four years. It will be lot more pressure. But same kind of players will be there,” she said.

Saina lost to Carolina Marin in the final of World Championships, but, despite her loss, she became the first Indian player to win the silver medal in this prestigious tournament.

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