‘Women’s team can better 2014 showing’

Badminton doubles player Ashwini Ponnappa believes that the Indian women’s team is in a good position to gain a medal in the upcoming Asian Games. Ashwini stated that the team can even better the bronze medal achieved in the 2014 Incheon Asian Games.

“Given the ability that we have, we can do even better than we did in 2014.

“We have players of real quality,” Ashwini, a Red Bull athlete, told
The Hindu
here on Friday.

Ashwini captured the women’s doubles bronze medal in the 2018 Commonwealth Games, but expects the competition to be much tougher in the Asian Games.

“The top badminton nations feature in the Asian Games, so the doubles events will be tougher than the Commonwealth Games,” Ashwini said. The selection of the Indian squad for the Asian Games has been recently questioned by Aparna Balan and Vaishnavi Reddy.

Contesting omission

Both players have moved the court to contest their omission from the squad.

Ashwini shied away from commenting on individual cases, but stated that these cases can be avoided if authorities adopt a straightforward selection process.

“Every single Indian badminton player works hard. It is not that the top players work any harder than the rest. In this case, you need to give players the hope that their hard work will be rewarded.

“So by that logic, everyone has a case to be a part of the team. The best that can be done would be to have clear cut rules for selection. That way, there’s no room for anyone to have reasons to complain.

“Look, (former doubles partner) Jwala Gutta and I have had our fair share of these issues.

“We’ve fought a lot over the years. All it got us was being labelled as cribbers who don’t perform,” Ashwini said.

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