Joshna Chinnapa believes the quality of squash on the continent has improved in recent years and the Indian hopes to leverage her knowledge and experience to beat her opponents in the upcoming Asian Games. The 36-year-old, who won the bronze medal in the women’s singles and silver in the team event last edition, will only compete in the individual competition at the Asian Games, which start on September 23 in Hangzhou.
Despite the fact that eight-time world champion Nicol David from Malaysia is no longer participating, Joshna thinks the Games will not be easy.
“Nicole has dominated for a long time. But the quality of Asian squash has risen in recent years and it will be difficult from round 1. You cannot take everyone for granted,” she said at a media meeting. interaction at the Indian Squash Academy here on Thursday.
“It is obviously not easy to play at this level. But I also have quite a bit of knowledge and experience. And hopefully I can count on that at the Games.
“At this stage I am ready to play against anyone because at this level you have to be ready to play against anyone. I am taking it day by day,” she continued.
With squash not featuring in the Olympic roster, Joshna said winning medals at the Asian Games is always special for her, especially as she represents India at the highest level.
“Playing for India has always been the highlight of my career, and it’s always something I look forward to. It’s, honestly, what has extended my career so long.” “Playing at these Games is always special because it happens every four years and it is very prestigious. The participating sides are at the top of their game. So to win a medal at these Games is special.” The Asian Games-bound squash players will have a camp in the city before their departure to China, where they will also be trained by former world champion Gregory Gaultier and James Willstrop.
“Some players have worked under him (Greg) and had great results on tour. I had a few sessions with him. It was good and intense. He is very good at honing your game before you go.” Joshna emphasized the importance of a support system.
“I’ve had this career on my own, traveling the world and playing tournaments alone without a coach or physio. But having a support system at tournaments would have been a bigger advantage for me.” “However, I get a great support system when I play for the country, including the coach, the manager and the physio. All you have to do is turn up and play, which takes a lot of pressure off us.” Joshna also had a few layoffs recently due to injuries, which took a toll on her rankings.
“Last year I had some really bad injuries that derailed me a bit. But that’s life and it’s part of the game, and you have to deal with it. Right now I’m not thinking about the rankings. My full focus is on the Asian Games.”
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