Hyderabad: The chief coach of India’s national badminton team, Pullela Gopichand, feels PV Sindhu will begin her Tokyo Olympics as one of the top favourites. Sindhu is currently ranked at No. 7 in the BWF rankings and she is in fine form. The lanky shuttler had won a Silver Medal in Rio Olympics in 2016 and there will be huge expectations from her in the upcoming Games.Also Read - LIVE Tokyo Olympics 2020 Live Score And Updates, Day 4: Shooters, Shuttlers Back in Action, India Men's Team to Take on Spain in Hockey
Gopichand also believes the duo of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty will also be key medal prospects in the doubles category for the Indian badminton team in the Tokyo Olympics. Gopichand, who is well known for his coaching skills, also spoke about how crucial mental stability is for the athletes, especially during the bio bubble where they don’t have the same liberty as they used to have pre-Covid days. Also Read - Live India vs Spain Hockey Score And Updates Tokyo Olympics: India Look to Bounce Back Against Spain
“I think this time around we will have India’s overall biggest medal tally till now. We are hopeful that will get to double digits and surpass our best performance (winning six medals) in London Olympics. There has been a lot of support and help from the government. We have chances in Shooting, Wrestling and Weightlifting (Mirabai Chanu). I hope Sindhu can pull, she is definitely going to be one of the favourites. Furthermore, Satwik and Chirag although have a tough draw but I do see them as potential prospects for a medal. There are a lot of athletes who have shown the promise to bring a medal this time around,” said Gopichand in the press conference organised by Dhayana App and Heartfulness when asked about India’s chances in Olympics. Also Read - VIDEO: Mirabai Chanu Returns Home, Recieves a Warm Welcome at Airport | WATCH
Gopichand also shed light on the importance of mental health for athletes given the expectations and pressure. The former player admitted that it is not easy for a player to manage the mental aspect and spoke about the importance of the Dhyana app.
The meditation tracking app Dhyana, backed by Pullela Gopichand is collaborating with Heartfulness Institute to equip our Olympians with holistic mental and emotional wellness tools.
Gopichand, who is the Director of Dhyana and the chief coach of the Indian Badminton Team, said “It’s not easy being where the players are right now. As if the pressures associated with the highest level of sports were not enough, fluctuating restrictions around the pandemic imposed in the Olympic Village are bound to further affect morale to a certain extent. We are confident that with the help of Dhyana’s tailored guided sessions and data-driven meditation, the contingent will be able to better focus on building their overall mental health in these trying times.”