P V Sindhu is in seventh heaven after having won her second consecutive World Badminton Championship bronze in Copenhagen, Denmark. The 19-year-old climbed two places to 10th spot in the Badminton World Federation (BWF) rankings, following her exploits in the 2014 World Badminton Championship. Sindhu spoke in an exclusive interview about her exploits in the marquee event and future aspirations.
Q Heartiest congratulations on winning your second World Badminton Championship crown. How was the overall experience?
It was really satisfying to win the World Badminton Championship title for the second consecutive time. Getting to the semifinals was not easy as I had scalped two higher ranked players along the way. Of course, improving on the bronze of the 2013 edition would have been nice, but I’m still happy to have settled for the bronze.
Q You lost in the semifinals to Spain’s Carolina Martin – to whom you lost earlier in the year at the Australian Open. Is she a hard nut to crack?
Look, Carolina is a solid player and is in good nick at the moment and eventually won the 2014 World Badminton Championship. I have lost to her twice this year, but have also won once again her and will be looking to beat her in our future encounters.
Q How would you differentiate your bronze-winning efforts at the 2013 and 2014 World Badminton Championships?
Every tournament, you play different players and other than that I found both the bronze-winning performances hugely satisfying. Hopefully, I can better the colour of the medal in the future World Badminton Championships.
Q You seem to have a knack of beating the mighty Chinese players – be it Li Xuerui, Wang Shixian or Wang Yihan.
My preparation levels are same for all players, not specifically the Chinese girls. I am happy to have done well against the Chinese players, and beating them gives you extra satisfaction as they enjoy a rich legacy in the sport.
Q You climbed two places to 10th position in the world rankings. Where do you want to be by year-end?
I’m pretty chuffed to have again broken into the top-10. I’m looking to get among the top-7 by 2014-end. I fully realize that it won’t be easy, but I will be putting in the hard yards to attain that.
Q Where do you think Indian shuttlers stand as compared to the Chinese, Malaysians, Japanese, etc?
Our shuttlers are as good as the players of these countries. Fitness-wise as well as tactics-wise we are capable of matching them in all departments of the game.
Q Do you think that there is lot of money in the sport now?
The Indian Badminton League has been a shot in the arm for badminton in India. The sport has gained more popularity and fan following in the country. Things are looking good.
Q You are busy preparing for the upcoming Incheon Asian Games. But looking at the bigger picture, how would you assess your chances of a podium finish at the 2016 Rio Olympics?
Right now, I’m focused on the Asian Games, where I want to do well. I want to take one tournament at a time, but of course the bigger goal is to win an Olympic medal. Saina Nehwal did a fantastic job clinching a bronze in the 2012 London Olympics.