iconimg Friday, July 03, 2015

Saina Nehwal
December 31, 2012
It has been an incredible year, not just for me, but for many sportspersons in this country. Winning the bronze at the London Olympics was a dream come true. An Olympic medal is the ultimate ambition of a sportsperson and for me, that ambition was fulfilled.



My life transformed completely after that medal. I had won other titles and have always been given a rousing welcome whenever I came back to India, but this time it was out of the world.

It was a very fruitful year for me. I won four other titles in the last 12 months — two Super Series Premiers and two Grand Prix Gold titles. In 2011, when I won just one title, critics termed it a bad year though I had done well in other tournaments. The expectations of my countrymen just keep growing, and in 2013, my aim is to live up to them.

My goal is simple — win as many tournaments as possible. I have maintained my ranking in the top-5 quite consistently and for that, it is important to win tournaments consistently.

I am also working on opening a badminton academy of the highest international standards. I have a number of offers. These things take time so I am waiting for them to materialise.

Sports and badminton, in particular, are going to get a big boost because of what India has achieved in 2012. Children eager to take up badminton should remember that hard work and dedication can get you anywhere. I am fortunate to have a supportive family and an equally dedicated team of coaches. Let your New Year resolution for 2013 be to pick up a badminton racquet!`

(The author, India’s foremost badminton player, won a bronze medal at the London Olympics, 2012)

(As told to Anamika Nandedkar)