New Delhi: Indian badminton player Ashwini Ponnappa on Wednesday stressed on the need to change the mindset of people when it comes to doubles tournaments for the players to excel in the field. Ponnappa emphasised on giving enough importance, support and encouragement to the double players so they willingly opt for doubles tournament and perform well in it.
“I think the most important thing is the mindset that needs to be changed when it comes to doubles and singles. And people need to understand that singles player or most of us have been playing the single from very young age. All of us started off as singles players and towards the end of your juniors’ years is when you kind of split in and start playing doubles,” she said.
“One needs time and encouragement for double’s players, one needs to encourage peers to take doubles and one way of doing so is not differentiating between the events from the junior level,” she added
Ponnappa’s comment came ahead of the Premier Badminton League (PBL) where she will play for the Delhi Dashers.
Talking about the tight scheduling of next year’s international calendar, the Badminton player said it is not much of an issue as there are few tournaments which are compulsory to play, so it eventually becomes manageable for a sportsperson.
“Whatever happens we would love to play, that’s what we do for a living. The schedule is really packed and is probably because of the Commonwealth Games and the Asian games which are next year. But having said that we also do have the choice to choose a tournament that we want to take on and the one we don’t,” she said.
It was a double delight for Ashwini at the Senior National Championship this November as she won the mixed doubles title with Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and women’s doubles trophy with N Sikki Reddy.
Ponnappa won gold at the 2010 Commonwealth Games, bronze at the 2011 World Championship and silver medal at the 2014 Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, with Jwala Gutta. The 28-year old went on to win two gold medals at the 2016 South Asian Games.