Ecstatic but unruffled by the burden of expectation after storming into the Olympic finals, Indian shuttler PV Sindhu today said she is in fact looking forward to end ace shooter Abhinav Bindra’s reign as the country’s sole individual Olympic gold-medallist.
The two-time World Championship bronze-medallist notched up a sensational 21-19, 21-10 victory over the All England Champion Nozomi Okuhara in a pulsating semi-final that lasted 49 minutes on Thursday night.
The World No. 10 from Hyderabad will next take on two-time World Champion and top seed Carolina Marin of Spain in the summit clash on Friday.
“My target will be to win the gold and I will play my heart out. I feel I really worked hard each and every time. Everybody’s aim is to get a medal at the Olympics, one more match to go. Definitely I feel that I’ve a chance,” Sindhu said.
“It’s nothing like pressure. It’s just that I have to give my 100 per cent. There’s one more match to go, I’m really prepared for today’ match. It’s not going to be easy. She is a really tough opponent. It’s the Olympic final, and she’s playing really well. It depends who gives her best and does well will win the final tomorrow.
Excited to make the final in her maiden Olympics, the lanky girl said: “I hope I would give my best today as well. First time in Olympics and also playing the final, is a very great feeling. Just one more match to go. I’m really very focused. Let’s hope for the best.”
The secret of her success is sheer hard work and determination and Sindhu said she just took one match at a time, like any other champion does.
“I did not think so far. I just kept on going every single match. The immediate target was to win the next match. If you keep on winning you are going to get a medal.”
Her assured medal comes less than 12 hours after another woman Sakshi Malik ended the anxious wait by clinching the 58kg freestyle bronze through repechage in wrestling.
Congratulating Sakshi, Sindhu said: “I did not meet her. I saw her on TV and I will definitely congratulate her for her bronze. She played really well. It’s a great thing for India.”
On her strategy in the final against the left-handed Marin, a two time World Championship winner, Sindhu said she would just have to go by her coach Pullela Gopichand.