New Delhi: India’s most consistent singles player in 2023, HS Prannoy wants to win more tournaments in the build-up to the 2024 Paris Olympics.
Prannoy won Malaysia Masters 2023 along with bronze medals at World Championships and Asian Games.
“A lot of good things happened in 2023 and to have both Asian Games and World Championships medals in one month was unbelievable,” Prannoy told media ahead of the India Open Super 750 tournament.
“My target this year is to win tournaments consistently and not just play the semis and finals,” he added further.
HS Prannoy started 2024 with a loss against Anders Antonsen of Denmark in the first round of the Malaysia Open 2024.
However, the Indian shuttler is content with loss due to the number of tournaments available on the circuit.
“You can’t be disappointed with a couple of losses when you are playing 19-20 tournaments in a year. There is no time to sulk,” Prannoy said.
Prannoy will be leading India’s charge at the India Open 2023 and will play against Chou Tien Chen of Chinese Taipei in the opening round.
“I have been playing India Open since 2012 and I have good memories here. I have the hunger to go out there and win the tournament,” he said.
Focusing on smaller goals in the race to the Olympics
Currently ranked ninth in the BWF Race to Paris rankings, Prannoy is focusing on the current tournaments rather than the Olympics.
“I think there is a lot of time for Paris and I am focusing on smaller goals at the moment looking at the next couple of months,” said Prannoy.
“It is a place where everybody wants to be, I would like to be there for sure but for me, these smaller goals are very important at the moment, ” he added.
Prannoy will aim to play 7-8 tournaments in the build-up to Paris to secure his qualification.
“Until April 2024, we have the qualification period, so until that, we might push for more tournaments, but the plan is to pick and choose after you qualify and then gradually peaking before the Olympics,” he said.
Good training plan and communication are helpful
“It is really important to program your training plan in advance and keep in mind the whole badminton calendar,” Prannoy said while talking about the importance of managing workload during the hectic schedule.
“My team including Guru, Gopi sir, and trainer Rohan has been communicating well to keep the whole process smooth,” he added further.
Despite having a stellar 2023, Prannoy had his fair share of struggles with injuries in the year.
He played with a strapped back on his route to a bronze medal at the Asian Games and had to pull out of the team event final against China.
“The good communication and planning by the team has helped to pick a tournament. Even if you are not fit, it is better to leave that tournament and focus on the next one, as there are many events,” Prannoy said
“It is important to respect the body and take decisions accordingly,” he concluded.