By a correspondent
New Delhi, March 26,
Raring to go after a couple of weeks of intense training, 2017 champion PV Sindhu is eager to lay her hands on the trophy again as the Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2019 gets underway, here today.
The World No. 6 reached the final of India’s premier badminton tournament for the last two years. Losing a nail-biter has undoubtedly made her more determined this time.
“I had a few weeks to train and am all set for the tournament. I hope I do my best. I was the 2017 winner and last year I was the runner-up. But I hope this time I get the title,” said Sindhu on the eve of the tournament.
The withdrawal of World No. 2 Chen Yufei has made the Indian shuttle queen as the top billing of this World Tour Super 500 tournament. However, that hasn’t put any extra pressure on the shoulders of the Rio Olympics silver medallist. Sindhu, in fact, is hoping to ride high on the crowd support at the Indira Gandhi Stadium.
In the absence of Shi Yuqi due to injury, 2017 winner Viktor Axelsen has got the highest seeding and the Dane will be aiming to win his second crown. This also opens up the competition.
“It is always really competitive, and the Indians are always dangerous to face at home. But I am not focussing on it and am looking forward to my first round match,” said the Rio Olympic bronze medallist on the quality of competition he will face at the tournament.
2015 men’s singles winner Kidambi Srikanth was also upbeat about his chances at the Yonex-Sunrise India Open 2019.
“I always play to win; it’s a good draw and I feel it will be a great competition with so many quality international stars coming in for the tournament.”
Srikanth, who is now ranked No. 7 in the world, also made it clear that his goal is to climb back into the top 3. Injuries had robbed him of consistency since his phenomenal season in 2017 but with an improved fitness, Srikanth is looking forward to creating fireworks again.
2012 Olympic gold medallist Li Xuerui was also present at the pre-tournament press conference and she hopes to use this tournament to continue her comeback to the highest echelons of the sport.
The ninth edition of the Yonex-Sunrise India Open- part of HSBC BWF World Tour Super 500 will witness participation of 292 shuttlers from 13 counties across five categories at the Indira Gandhi Stadium till March 31.
By a correspondent