We should win a medal in all five events : Kashyap

Source: The Hitavada      Date: 31 Mar 2018 11:01:54




THE excitement was palpable in his voice as reigning men’s singles champion Parupalli Kashyap predicted the Indian badminton team’s best-ever haul, including a medal in each event, at the upcoming Commonwealth Games. Four years ago, Kashyap had broken a 32-year-old record when he won India’s third men’s singles gold at CWG, emulating Prakash Padukone (1978) and Syed Modi (1982).

His exploits helped India bring home four medals from the discipline at the Glasgow Games—one gold, one silver and two bronze medals.Since that day when he stood with the tri-colour draping him, Kashyap’s life took a massive turn as multiple injuries, including a calf muscle tear and a knee surgery coupled with poor form, saw his ranking dip and he eventually missed the bus for the Gold Coast Games.“I would have loved to play again but if I were the team selectors, I wouldn’t put myself in the team because Prannoy and Srikanth have done exceptionally well,” the former world number 6 told PTI.

“We have a good team and if we can play to our potential, best possible scenario we should win a medal in all five categories, so more than four medals for sure.”Top seed India have been drawn with minnows Pakistan, Scotland and Sri Lanka in Group A of the Games, which will be held from April 4 to 15.“We are top seeded this time and it would boil down to who we play in semi-finals. England have decent men and mixed doubles and there is Rajiv Ouseph in singles, but I feel advantage is with India as HS Prannoy and K Srikanth can beat him even though Rajiv generally plays better in such situation.

“Chirag and Satwik are also playing well, so it would be crucial. I think it is 60-40 in India’s favour,” Kashyap said.“Against Malaysia, it is a 40-60 situation for us even with Lee Chong Wei because in women’s singles we are strong. Men’s doubles and mixed doubles they are better on paper, so it would be difficult. “Even if we unfortunately lose in semis we still should win bronze as there are no team strong enough to compete. Last time we lost to Singapore but then they had decent mixed and men’s doubles. Me and Sindhu had won but we lost the doubles. So I feel we will win a medal for sure in team event,” he explains.

Ghosh-less TT squad leaves for Gold Coast

A NINE-MEMBER table tennis squad, led by triple-gold medallist Sharath Kamal, Friday left for Gold Coast to take part in the Commonwealth Games beginning April 4.Men’s coach Massimo Costantini and women’s coach Soumyadeep Roy along with two support staff (a masseur and physio) are also part of the contingent.The team members, after arriving from their respective hometowns, headed straight to the send-off dinner organised in honour of the contingent.

Key player Soumyajit Ghosh was dropped from the squad in the 11th hour after he was accused of raping an 18-year-old, a charge he has denied.Costantini however was still confident about India’s chances.“I am expecting the teams to win at least four medals. All players are in good shape which is an indication of the level of preparation. I am positive and so are the team members,” said the coach. India had a poor outing in Glasgow four years ago when it returned with just one medal.