Malaysia’s Muhammad Hafiz Hashim approved as PV Sindhu’s coach - Hindustan Times
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Malaysia’s Muhammad Hafiz Hashim approved as PV Sindhu’s coach

By, New Delhi
Jul 18, 2023 01:47 PM IST

The double Olympic medallist, struggling for consistency this season, will be guided by the former All England champion until the Paris Olympics

PV Sindhu will have Malaysia’s Muhammad Hafiz Hashim guiding her for the upcoming tournaments after the Sports Authority of India (SAI) approved the former All England champion as her coach till the 2024 Paris Olympics.

Indian badminton player PV Sindhu had requested SAI and Badminton Association of India to assign Hashim as her coach last month(PTI)
Indian badminton player PV Sindhu had requested SAI and Badminton Association of India to assign Hashim as her coach last month(PTI)

The double Olympic badminton medallist had requested SAI and Badminton Association of India to assign Hashim as her coach last month. The Mission Olympic Cell (MOC) of SAI cleared it on Thursday.

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Hashim flew from New Delhi to Yeosu on Monday to join the former world champion, who plays in the $420,000 Korea Open this week. The 40-year-old coached Sindhu for two weeks in Hyderabad before she left to play two tournaments, in Canada and the US.

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“After Korea, Hashim will also travel to coach Sindhu at the Japan Open, Australian Open and the Asian Games,” Pradeep Raju, co-founder and director of Hyderabad’s Suchitra Badminton Academy (SBA) where Sindhu trains while at home, said.

Raju had brought in Hashim as coach at SBA in February. Sindhu practices at the academy, where she does strength and conditioning work under Srikanth Verma.

It is learnt SAI will pay Hashim’s travel and daily allowance while his salary will be paid by SBA and sports promotion body Olympic Gold Quest (OGQ), which has supported Sindhu for many years.

Sindhu split with South Korean coach Park Tae-sang – he had joined in late 2019 – in February. Under Park, Sindhu won bronze at the 2021 Tokyo Olympics. While 2022 was one of her best seasons, this year has been underwhelming since she returned in January after a six-month break due to stress fracture in the left foot.

On Monday, Sindhu put out a lengthy social media post bemoaning her current form, having lost in the semi-finals at the Canada Open and in the quarter-finals at the US Open in the last fortnight.

“My US Open journey came to an end in the quarterfinals where I faced the talented Gao Fang Jie. Despite having previously defeated her in Canada, she outplayed me in straight games this time, making effective use of my weaknesses. I must commend her for being fully prepared and delivering an impressive performance. Next time I face you Gao, should be a battle,” Sindhu wrote. (Gao finished runner-up on Sunday).

“This loss has left a significant emotional impact on me, especially considering the challenging and demanding year I’ve had. It’s disheartening to experience a disappointing defeat after each successful tournament. However, I am determined to channel my emotions into redoubling my efforts and making the remainder of the year truly remarkable.”

In 11 tournaments this year, Sindhu has lost in the first two rounds seven times. Her only final was at the Spain Masters. She reached the semi-finals twice and the quarters once.

“As I look ahead, I am eagerly anticipating the upcoming competitions in Korea and Japan. I will continue to push forward, driven by the unwavering support and encouragement of Indian fans everywhere I go. Your support means the world to me, and I am deeply grateful for it,” Sindhu wrote.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    From badminton to cricket, Sandip Sikdar writes on many sporting disciplines. He has the experience of working in digital, news agency as well as print organisations. Motorsport remains his first love.

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