Tokyo Olympics is roughly five months away and ace India shuttler PV Sindhu is keen to improve on her silver medal finish four years ago in Rio de Jeneiro. Sindhu, who went down to Spanish shuttler Carolina Marina in the final of the women’s badminton event, went on to become one of India’s top sportspersons, which saw her win gold at World Badminton Championship last year. Also Read - Badminton | PV Sindhu Needs to Give More Attention to Recovery Between Matches to Win Medal at Tokyo Olympics: Vimal Kumar
Heading to Tokyo, Sindhu is one of India’s brightest medal prospects and although pressure promises to be immense on the shoulders of the 24-year-old the shuttler is not willing to let the weight of expectation tie her down. Also Read - Badminton: PV Sindhu Loses All England Open 2021 Semifinal Against Pornpawee Chochuwong in Straight Games, Knocked Out of Tournament
“From 2016 to 2020 – a lot of things have changed in my game and life. I am not taking any pressure (of expectations) and only focusing on working hard to win (a medal). Lot of people have said I have achieved a lot but I still feel this is only the beginning and there is a lot of more I want to (achieve),” Sindhu told Times of India, while laying the foundation stone of PV Sindhu Badminton Academy in Chennai on Wednesday. Also Read - Badminton | All England Open 2021: PV Sindhu Beats Akane Yamaguchi to Enter Women's Singles Semifinal
Since becoming the first Indian shuttler to win the coveted BWF World Championship title last year, Sindhu has failed to lift any trophy on the circuit. Apart from the World Championship, the World No. 6 has consistently failed to raise her level in crunch matches with her ordinary form extending through the 2019 season. As she enters the Olympics year, Sindhu is trying to get better as two particular aspects of her game.
“It’s not like I have been playing bad (in the last few tournaments). It’s just that I committed a few unforced errors which proved to be the difference,” she said. “I have been working on my defence. Also, (I feel) I have to be little more patient. After a (long) rally, I end up committing a simple error where I have to give (away) points.”
Sindhu has also turned to a meditation and relaxation technique known as ‘Heartfulness’ in the last 11 months in order to improve her concentration level.
“It will not give you instant success. Meditation techniques help you remain calm and keep you going. During matches you can get impatient, become angry and lose points. That’s where the role of Heartfulness comes into play,” she said.
Sindhu started the year on a high guiding the Bengaluru Raptors to back-to-back Premier Badminton League titles and wants to continue the same form at the All England Open in Birmingham from March 11 to 15.
“The top-15 players in the world are of the same standard. It all boils down to who plays well on that given day. If Plan A doesn’t work on a given day, you must have Plan B in order to stay in the game,” she said.