New Delhi, April 27 (IANS) World No.1 shuttler Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia lauded Indian national badminton coach Pullela Gopichand and ace shuttler Saina Nehwal here Saturday.
“India has improved a lot. They have a good coach in Gopichand, who won the All England title. Saina is very famous and is World No.2 now. She is playing really well. (Parupalli) Kashyap is also a good player. Indian players are playing well. You had five Indians in the men’s quarterfinals here at the India Open which has never happened before,” said Lee, who reached his third consecutive final of the India Open Super Series here at the Siri Fort Sports Complex Saturday.
Asked his views on the upcoming Indian Badminton League (IBL), he said he isn’t aware of the details as of now.
“I know it’s after the World Championships. I don’t know much about it because nobody has discussed with me so far. I hope to come to India and play here as I love the fans here. The league is good for the players as they will get publicity and it will be good for Indian badminton too as juniors will get a chance to play against international stars,” said the 30-year-old.
Lee also said that having reached the Olympic finals twice and losing both times still hurts and if his body permits, he will try to go for the gold in 2016 at Rio de Janeiro.
“Olympic gold is my dream and I tried my best twice in 2008 and 2012 and both times I lost the final. I’ll try one more time in 2016 if I stay injury free. I’d like to see how fit I am next year after the Commonwealth Games and the Asian Games. I hope I don’t sustain injuries because it is very difficult to recover from there and get back to the court,” added the Malaysian.
Asked why China continues to dominate the sport, Lee jokingly said: “Probably because they have a lot of people in their country.”