Not enough badminton coaches in India: Saina Nehwal

Hyderabadi shuttler, who is set to play coach to children at her newly-launched an academy in Greater Noida, laments the lack of quality coaching in the country

New Delhi: The year 2015 will see India’s badminton sensation Saina Nehwal don a new hat — that of a coach.

Saina Nehwal
Saina Nehwal meets young shuttlers during her visit to Bhopal on Tuesday. Pic/PTI.

The India shuttler has set up a new badminton academy in Gaur City at Greater Noida, where she will spend some time coaching kids. “I will be there as a coach. I will try to give as much time as possible to the kids and support them. I will give them some tips. Let’s see how it goes in the initial stages and if the kids do well, then we can think of roping in international level coaches also and make it more professional. Through this academy I would love to come out with competitive badminton players,” she emphasised.

Stating that Indian badminton suffers from lack of quality coaches, she said: “Badminton is coming up very well in India. But we still lack in coaching aspect. There is infrastructure but not enough coaches.”

Comparing India with badminton powerhouses like China and Malaysia, she said those countries have a larger pool of talented youngsters to choose from. “In those countries, every village has 30,000 kids playing badminton. That is the difference. 30,000 players coming from every city, gives an option of larger pool to select from. The coaches there are also Olympic or World Champions, and they have the freedom to go to any nook and corner and bring out the talent, whom they can develop,” she explained.

The World No 4 also added that she had her sights set on bettering her 2014 performance in the coming year.
She said: “2014 has been a very good year for me. I won three titles — India Open, Australia Open and China Open — besides a bronze in the Asian Games.

“I started the year as World No 9 but managed to climb up to No 4 in the rankings. I tried to focus more on my fitness and my game is also improving. I hope to do even better in 2015. Although I can only train hard, am sure if I am prepared well then results will definitely come.”

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