I Kept the Negative Thoughts Away: Saina Nehwal on Asiad Bronze

Saina Nehwal talked about her opponent Tai Tzu Ying, her surgery and how she keeps negativity at bay to focus.

Asian Games
2 min read

Ace shuttler Saina Nehwal won the bronze medal after losing her semi-final match against world number one Tai Tzu Ying on Monday, 27 August. However, though the Olympics medallist is content with her performance, she says there is still scope for improvement.

On her performance at the Asian Games, Saina said that she has to keep challenging herself and continue to improve.

Competing for medals in major events, from Olympics to Commonwealth Games, has always been “a great thing”, said Saina on clinching a bronze.

I would say it is all destined, I could have got the medal even in 2010 when there was a sure chance because that year I won 5 super series titles because I was somewhere in those top three girls and everyone was expecting that Saina could definitely win the medal there. But it happens sometimes you lose on account of pressure and tense situations.
Saina Nehwal, Indian Badminton Player

Saina further said that belief, motivation and hard work, along with optimism, matter a lot in sports.

“I think that belief and the motivation of working hard definitely helps in getting what you desire. It’s not easy to get the gold because you have to beat the world's best, and Asian Games is like Olympics for us. It’s like all the top Asian countries are playing here so you know, the challenge was there, but I think I worked hard, kept myself cool and relaxed. I steered clear of negative thoughts.”

She also talked about the pressure of having to meet people’s expectations.

Yeah, people doubt your form, sometimes when you’re up, you’re good or you’re down, and you’re not. But that is okay, it’s a part of life, you have to go with it. You are a person who is known, people will look up to you and they will comment on you, it’s their right. What I can do is play and improve myself and my game.

Thanking her coach P Gopichand, Saina also said that while she couldn’t fetch a gold, she remains spirited in her approach to the game.

You have to respect whatever you have won and not get disheartened.

The badminton ace also talked about her injury, and said that surgery was new to her. She said that although she felt she may not recover from her surgery, she didn’t let her negative thoughts get the better of her.

Saina also spoke about her opponent and world’s number one badminton player, Tai Tzu Ying. She said that Ying’s ability to put up a variety of shots and her deception made her as close to perfect as possible.

To beat her, you also have to have a complete game, very smooth moments, very easy coverage of the court is required, so it’s easy to tell but difficult to execute. She has overall ability. I would say she is close to perfect, it is like that. To beat someone perfect, you also have to be close to perfect.

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