PV Sindhu reveals the three decisions that brought her Rio medal
An early loss at the Australian Open two months before Rio helped her and Pullela Gopichand assess things.
What’s the story?
It is well-known that the Indian shuttle queen PV Sindhu made a few sacrifices in order to be in the best frame of mind for the Rio Olympics in 2016. At the India Today Conclave in Mumbai on Friday, the Rio Olympic silver medallist revealed the three decisions that she made, which proved to be life-changing for her and brought her the highly-coveted medal.
In case you didn’t know
Sindhu suffered a first round defeat at the Australian Open Superseries just two months before the Rio Games and was on a two-match losing streak heading into the mega multi-sporting event.
The heart of the matter
It was that particular defeat which helped Sindhu and her mentor, Pullela Gopichand have an open chat about what was required in order to be in the best shape possible for the Olympics. Gopichand told his ward to write her mistakes on a paper and he too wrote his own on another piece of paper.
“When we went back to India he said write your mistakes on a paper and even I'll write mine and come to the office and we'll show it to each other,” she recounted.
“I wrote some points of where I made mistakes. And what he wrote actually made a difference,” elaborated the 22-year-old.
The 2017 World Championships silver medallist said that it was then that Gopichand drilled into her head the three mantra for success that they would have to follow rigorously.
“I told him my mistakes and he was like okay. This is what you have to do from my side -- We have to practice really hard and be focussed all the time, no sugar in your diet and no mobile phone for the next 8 months,” she said.
Gopichand, who too was at the conclave, explained that “special tournaments need special preparations” and disclosed that he had the same approach even when Saina Nehwal was gearing up for the 2012 London Olympics. The chief national coach believes that these little changes in daily routine are necessary to stay motivated as they remind one of the ultimate goal.
Sindhu will be seen in action next week as she sets her sights on winning the prestigious All England Championships for the first time. She is seeded fourth and takes on former junior World Championships runner-up Pornpawee Chochuwong in the first round.
Sindhu’s dedication, determination and her ability to stay focussed on what Gopichand advised her played a big role in her confident show at Rio and afterwards. If she can continue with the same positive attitude and manages to stay grounded, she can scale even bigger heights.