World No. 14 P. Kashyap is looking to return to the BWF Super Series circuit with the Denmark Open beginning on October 15.

On Sunday, the country’s top-ranked shuttler returned to the Siri Fort Indoor hall, where, during the Indian Badminton League last month, he twisted his right-ankle.

Kashyap, who endured the pain throughout a forgettable campaign, resumed training only three days ago to be able to serve Indian Oil in the on-going Petroleum inter-unit badminton meet commencing on Monday.

“I am far from being 100 per cent fit, but I could not afford to miss this event. After all, our employers look after us all year and want us to represent them just for two weeks in a year (once each for the Petroleum meet and Public Sector championship).

“Since the rehabilitation process is still on, I not only have to strengthen the affected muscles, but also play cautiously. I will play the team championship and see if I can skip the individual event. I guess a week more with my support team in Hyderabad, and I should be match-fit.”

Sindhu, a household name since claiming the World championship bronze last month, will lead Bharat Petroleum’s campaign in the absence of Saina Nehwal.

In the Japan Open that ended on Sunday, Sindhu lost in the second round to Japanese teenage qualifier and eventual champion Akane Yamaguchi, ranked 145 in the world, 21-6, 21-17.

“It was just not my day. I could not settle down early and committed too many mistakes. She was more comfortable in home conditions and played really well,” conceded the 18-year-old, flashing her infectious smile.

Sindhu maintains she still has a long way to go. “With more experience, I will surely get better and be more consistent.”

Reflecting on her two defeats to Saina in the IBL, Sindhu said, “Saina is a better player, both in terms of skills and experience. Even in those two matches, she played much better than me. I could not get my game together,” was the candid admission of Sindhu.

Learning

Ashwini, representing Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC), was looking forward to the upcoming Super Series events after “learning so much” from being part of the IBL.

On the prospects of resuming her partnership with Jwala in mixed doubles, Ashwini said, “Badminton is an individual sport and the decision to play with a certain player should be left to the concerned player.

“I’d rather not play if I am uncomfortable with my partner on and off the court. Jwala and I have played a lot in the past and we are keen to get back and express ourselves.”

When asked about the uncertainty over Jwala making it to next month’s major events in view of the showcause notice issued to her by BAI’s disciplinary committee for her role in the delayed match between Delhi and Bangalore in the IBL, Ashwini said, “There is very little that I can do in this matter. I am training hard and staying focussed. I wish and pray everything is seen in the right light and we get to play together in the next event, as planned.”

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