Confidence, it seems, has become the hallmark of world champion Sushil Kumar. Despite skipping competitions "to prepare in a more professional way" for the World Championships, scheduled six weeks from now, the Beijing bronze-medallists is quite focussed.
"I am training hard. It's the only way to reach the top. If all goes well, I shall win a medal in the world meet," said Sushil from his training base in Sonepat, Haryana, where the national camp is in progress. Sushil is undergoing rigorous training sessions of four hours each in the morning and evening.
Following the Delhi Commonwealth Games, which was the last competition Sushil participated in, he was laid low by a shoulder injury and family commitments.
Lack of competitive sharpness in the face of tough opposition, however, doesn't bother Sushil's coach, Yashvir Singh. "Sushil is all focussed to make an impact at the World Championships in Turkey from September 12, where the top-six wrestlers in each weight category will qualify for the London Games," said Yashvir.
His theory is based on Sushil's training regimen. "Sushil is enjoying good fitness. There is no injury problem," said the coach.
"Sushil is an experienced grappler. Even if he doesn't compete in the months prior to a big event, it wouldn't spoil his chances. He is ready for the big challenge," Yashvir told HT from Sonepat.