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SportBadmintonSatwik-Chirag pair trains at Gachibowli Indoor stadium

Satwik-Chirag pair trains at Gachibowli Indoor stadium

Published: 7th Jun 2021 11:48 pm

Hyderabad: After Rio Olympic silver medallist PV Sindhu opted to practice with Korean coach Park Tae Sang at the SATS Indoor Stadium in Gachibowli in February, the men’s doubles duo of Chirag Shetty and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy too decided to train at this venue. The doubles pair will, however, have only two sessions in a week (Wednesday and Saturday) under Dutch coach Mathias Boe as part of their preparations for the Tokyo Olympics. Unlike world champion Sindhu, who practices at SATS Stadium only after moving out of SAI-Gopichand Academy, Satwik and Chirag will continue to train for the rest of the four days at the academy. At the Gachibowli Stadium, they are playing on the adjacent court while Sindhu is practicing at the other court daily with her coach.

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Both Satwik and Chirag confirmed this news. “We are practicing for two sessions, on Wednesdays and Saturdays, at SATS Indoor Stadium at Gachibowli. We have some practice games on these two days. We are trying to get that simulation to play in bigger stadiums. Since we have been practicing for quite a while at SAI-Gopichand Academy, we wanted some change in our practice sessions. It will be useful in our preparations for the Tokyo Olympics. As the Stadium will be big in Tokyo, the idea of practicing could be a part of the training sessions for the next one month or so,” said the 20-year-old Satwik.

Chirag said the decision to practice at Gachibowli was taken collectively. “We discussed with Mathias and Gopi sir as there was a need to accustom as most of the stadiums in Super Series and the venue at Japan Olympics is big. The conditions will be quite similar to Gachibowli stadium,” added the 23-year-old.

Satwik said they are requesting for the A/C to be switched on so that it will be useful for their practice sessions. “Though we did not find much drift at the venue in Japan, we thought it is better to have practice matches with A/C switched on also. It is all part of the exercise for the Tokyo Olympics. We are feeling good by practicing at the Indoor Stadium.”

Satwik said they were happy with new Dutch doubles coach Boe. “Since we have been hit by the Covid-19 pandemic we have not been able to play in any of the tournaments and therefore can’t correctly assess. The Olympics will be a big test for us. But we are getting some quality inputs from him. We are happy with the way the practice sessions are being conducted, There is a lot of intensity and purpose in the sessions.”

Chirag echoed his partner’s feelings on Boe. “It is good but initially it took some time to get used to his tactics. But we are now enjoying the sessions and trying various strokes and tactics which will help us in matches.”

Satwik revealed that the Tokyo Olympics is a big occasion. “There is palpable excitement and we waited too long for this moment. I’m grateful to my parents who allowed me to live my dream and hopefully win a medal for India. They are not putting any pressure and they are also waiting patiently for the Tokyo Olympics.”

Chirag said the excitement for the Olympics is there. “But there is a lot of uncertainty ever since the Tokyo Olympics was postponed because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Therefore I’m not thinking about the Olympics and instead focusing on my training. We are jelling very well as partners and setting our targets with each practice sessions although we miss playing in the tournaments very badly.”

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