It might have come as a surprise to many fans, but Saina Nehwal has ambitions of setting up an academy in Bangalore. The world No.4 was talking to the press after she and boxer Mary Kom were felicitated by a real estate company in Bangalore.
“I want to do something for badminton in Bangalore; I can see the interest here,” she said. “I hope to support badminton in a big way here so that youngsters get motivated.” Saina said she was discussing the possibility with real estate company Commune India and sports company Target Games Facilities.
Saina spoke warmly of her association with Bangalore. “When I was a junior, I used to visit the city every two or three months to attend the badminton camps at Sports Authority of India (SAI). I’ve played many tournaments here at the KBA Courts (which houses the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy) as well. I hope to come here again and again.”
Meanwhile, fellow-Olympian Mary Kom, who had stated recently that she’d love to settle down in Bangalore, said she would like her kids to study in the city. “I’m very happy to be here,” she said. “I cannot spend too much time here though as I am employed with the Manipur Police. I like Bangalore a lot, and maybe my kids will study here in the future.”
Saina and Mary Kom pledged an item from their personal sport gear for an auction. The proceeds will go to Save a Mother, a not-for-profit organisation aimed at improving healthcare provided to expectant mothers. (With agency inputs)