The last few months have been an affair upside down B Sai Praneeth. After qualifying for the Tokyo Olympics to reach one of his career landmarks, things went horribly wrong for Sai Praneeth.
The first Olympics for Sai Praneetha proved to be a forgettable experience as he failed to win both league matches against low-ranked opponents. Surprising consecutive defeats meant he could not qualify for the knockout phase of the four-year Games. Agus Dwi Santoso from Indonesia accompanied Sai Praneeth as a coach at Tokyo Olympics.
After a disappointing performance at the Tokyo Games, a better performance of Sai Praneeth in the Sudirman Cup and Thomas Cup was expected.
However, the bad series continued for Sai Praneeth in team disciplines because he did not meet expectations. The 16th shuttle of the world barely managed to win the matches against the pigeons of the Netherlands and Tahiti, but he gave up in the key match against Denmark.
Sai Praneeth reached his lowest point when he was knocked out in the first round of the Denmark Open in Odense. In the first match across India, Sai Praneeth lost in consecutive games against Kidambi Srikanth.
I’m disappointed with my recent performance and I feel bad: Sai Praneeth
Sai Praneeth, 29, feels depressed about his series of disappointing results. Hyderabadi called it one of the lowest stages in his career.
“It’s not a good feeling when you lose all the time. I am obviously disappointed with the recent results. It was a bad effect from me. It hurts more when people have more expectations of me. At the moment, I don’t have self-confidence because I wasn’t able to do the best I could, ”said Sai Praneeth.
Sai Praneeth, a bronze medalist at the 2019 BWF World Championships, has been battling back pain for the past six months. This happened due to additional efforts invested in training over a period of time.
“A lot of people don’t know, but I’ve been facing the problem of back pain for the last few months. It definitely affects my game. I am not able to do my best because the pain is constantly present. I wore this pain during the Olympics and after. It’s not an injury. It’s just a pain, but it definitely hinders my movement on the field, “said Sai Praneeth.
Sai Praneeth, an intern at the Pullela Gopichand Badminton Academy, takes a break from participating in tournaments. He wants to solve this problem before competing in tournaments again.
“I was supposed to play in a few tournaments, but I came back to India after the Denmark Open. Now I want to take a break. I concentrate a lot to strengthen my back and solve this back problem once and for all. I work with my physiotherapist on how to do back strengthening exercises. Although I continued my practice a few days ago after returning to Hyderabad, the focus is more on the aspects of strengthening, ”said Sai Praneeth.
Arjuna award winner Sai Praneeth is targeting Indonesian masters for his resuscitation. The BWF World Tour Super 750 tournament will be held in Bali, Indonesia from November 16 to 21, 2021.
“There are three weeks left until the Indonesia Masters. I want to train well and refresh myself for the fight. I am working with my coach Gopichand Sir and support staff on how to make the most of this time to prepare. I hope to use this period to analyze my performance so far. I know that it is only a matter of a few victories and that I will regain my lost self-confidence. I hope that the Indonesia Masters will achieve its goal, ”said Sai Praneeth.
Gopi Sir helps me overcome my bad phase with his guidance: Sai Praneeth
Sai Praneeth has a strong connection with head national coach Pullel Gopichand. For Sai Praneetha, Gopichand is more than a mentor. During this difficult time, Sai Praneeth relies on his mentor to get him out of the crisis.
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“I talked to Gopi Sir regularly. And he is disappointed with my lack of form. However, being a coach and a former ace, he knows that every player is going through this kind of difficult phase in his career. According to him, only a few big victories separate me from the return of the old touch. He believes they can be on top for a few more years. I am optimistic that I will change my destiny soon, ”said Sai Praneeth.
Critics have been targeting Sai Praneeth’s blood since his grim performance at the Olympics, the Sudirman Cup, the Thomas Cup and the Denmark Open. The time has come for Sai Praneeth to respond to his critics with better performance in the next few tournaments.