• Thursday, May 30, 2024


Kidambi Srikanth can be top again, says coach Kashyap

Former world number six expects India to win two medals in Paris

Srikanth Kidambi .

By: Eastern Eye

COACH Parupalli Kashyap feels Kidambi Srikanth’s best is yet to come and expects him to produce some good results this season having worked on his fitness and game.

Former world number one Srikanth, who claimed four super series titles in 2017, has been struggling with form for quite some time.

However, the 31-year-old, who had claimed a silver medal at the 2021 World Championships, showed signs of a comeback when he secured a semifinal spot at the Swiss Open Super 300 in March.

“I think his best will come, and you can expect good results from him this year and next year,” said Kashyap on the sidelines of the Road to Old Trafford football event organised by English football club Manchester United last Sunday (7).

Srikanth, a 2018 Commonwealth Games gold medallist, missed the Paris Olympics qualification after slipping to world number 27 following a series of poor performances.

“He was struggling in terms of fitness. He must have tried hard, but the coach he hired from Indonesia did not work, as he could not play with high intensity during the matches. He lost matches quite easily and even failed to put up a fight in some,” Kashyap said.

“I expect a lot from him since he has been brilliant in training and progressing well in his fitness and game. He has always been a spectacular player, and I have always been amazed by him. I see huge potential in him,” he added.

Indian badminton will be in focus during the Paris Olympics and Kashyap has backed the country’s shuttlers to win a couple of medals.

“I believe we are the strongest in men’s doubles, but it’s a tense field. I expect India to win two badminton medals in Paris, which would be awesome,” said the 2014 Commonwealth Games gold medallist.

Kashyap also backed Priyanshu Rajawat and S Sankar Muthusamy Subramanian as young Indian talents to watch out for. “Priyanshu Rajawat is exceptional and can be among the top five in the world, but he needs to be groomed properly. Obviously, Lakshya Sen is also there.

Sankar Muthusamy Subramanian is good, but he needs to develop. He is playing too many tournaments too early. He has to develop his game along with the right coaching and needs to spend more time training. For now, his game looks predictable, which he seriously needs to work on and develop further,” he said.

The former world number six started focusing on coaching after a spate of recurring injuries made it tough to continue his playing career. “I am enjoying, have been an allpassion guy. I am blessed that (Pullela Gopichand) Gopi sir has been my coach, who has an academy, and he gave me a free hand at coaching,” said the 37-year-old.

“He even asked me to choose players I would like to train, make a group and take control of the batch there. Also, with his supervision, there is nothing else that I could have asked for. I want the Indian team to dominate world badminton and the upcoming generation of players to achieve what I could not.

If they have the right training ideas and work ethic, which I think I can instill in them, they can enter the top 20 or 30,” he added.

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