Lakshya Sen, who made history by becoming the youngest Indian shuttler by winning the men’s singles medal at the 2021 World Badminton Championships, is focusing on playing more matches against various opponents to gain much needed experience before competing in Paris. 2024 Olympics.
Debuting at his World Championships, the 20-year-old showed off his class and knocked out top players like Canta Nishimoto and Kevin Corden on the podium at the recently concluded event in Huelva, Spain.
Sen said he wants to learn from his mistakes and gain more experience in each tournament.
“I have time before the Paris Olympics and I want to play more matches and bigger tournaments against different types of competitors so that I can gain some experience and improve my game to compete at that level,” Lakshya Sen told IANS in an interview. Stated. .
“Not just playing, I want to win big tournaments and improve my rankings so that I can qualify for the Olympics and fulfill my biggest dream of winning a medal for the country,” he added.
With a medal at the World Championships, Sen joined the shortlist of Indian men’s shuttlers – the legendary Prakash Padukone (bronze in 1983) and B Sai Praneet (bronze in 2019), Kidami Srikkanth (silver in 2021) who won medals. Prestigious event.
In the All India semifinals, the young shuttler lost to compatriot Kidambi Srikkanth. Even though Sen lost that match, he gave his 100 percent on the court and he thinks a medal in his first World Championship will boost his confidence.
“I was a little disappointed with the result of the semi-final match. He fought very closely and I could not win. However, I tried everything I could on the court and overall it was a good match, “said the young shuttler.
“It feels really good to win a medal in my debut championship and it will be a confidence booster for my upcoming tournaments,” he added.
The youngster from Almora, Uttarakhand participated in many international competitions before the championship, which helped him to get in rhythm.
“The pre-championship tournaments helped me practice the match and playing consistent matches helped me regain my rhythm. Obviously, playing back-to-back games was a factor of fatigue but I managed it well, “he said.
The unforced errors made by Lakshya Sen in the semi-final match were noteworthy and he also acknowledged the need to work in this area.
“Yes, I made some unforced mistakes at the crucial time. However, I am trying to be a little more consistent and not give my opponents easy points because I understand that a good player will not allow me to score against him so easily, “he said.
The target looks more composed than before, ready to play long rallies and wait for its chances to hit the winners. Against Zhao Jun Peng in the quarterfinals, the goal demonstrated his mental strength by saving match points.
In the last few years, the young shuttler has been appearing more composed than ever before. He is ready to play long rallies and wait for the opportunity to hit the winners, on which he has worked with his coach.
“I’ve been trying for a long time because you don’t get easy chances to score at a high level. You have to wait for the right moment, so I’m trying to play long rallies. I have been practicing it in my training and it is getting better now though it needs further improvement, ”he said.
Sen realizes that he will have to work harder to reach the podium consistently in the senior circuit. “I’m trying to increase my strength, endurance, skills and my overall game,” Shutler said.
San Tokyo was unable to qualify for the Olympics due to a back injury and a lack of opportunities in the Covid-19-affected badminton calendar.
According to Sen, it was a difficult time for him but the people around him helped him cope with all the problems.
“Every athlete goes through injuries during their careers and it was a difficult time for me. But I encouraged myself by saying that I am young and will have many opportunities in the future and if I am fit I can play (in the Olympics), “he explained.
“I talked to my mental trainers and made good use of my time. Since I had back problems, I focused on my skills training. My physio and doctors arranged everything for me. And as you know, training plays a big role in recovering from injuries, my coach, my father helped me in all these aspects, “he added.
The Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy (PPBA) in Bangalore has recently hired Korean coach Yu Yong-sung, a two-time Olympic silver medalist, as its head coach. Sen, who trains and practices at the academy, will benefit from the former Olympic medalist’s tactical skills and practical intelligence.
However, the shuttler wants to rest for at least a week to revive and recover after playing several tournaments over the past month and a half.
“Yes, I met him (Yu Yong-sang) today and I am excited to work with him but I do not want to rush. I’ve played a lot of tournaments over the last month and a half and will take a little break to get out of all the swallows and pain. Then I’ll go back to training, “Sen concluded.