Ace Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal is just a step away from realising her goal of becoming the world's No.1 player as she jumped one place to a career-best second in the latest international rankings.
“I am very happy to achieve the World No. 2 so soon in my career. The last three wins have really helped me. It is a great feeling but I feel my priority still will be to win more tournaments for India rather than focussing on rankings,” Saina said.
“It will be difficult to hold on to the ranking but I hope to continue my hard work and win more titles and become the number one player soon,” said the Hyderabadi shuttler.
The 20-year-old Saina made a meteoric rise following her back-to-back title triumphs at the India Open Grand Prix and the Singapore Open Super Series, reaching the World No. 3 last month.
And after the Indian defended her Indonesian Open Super Series crown to complete her hat-trick of titles, it was just a matter of time that she jumped to the second place.
By virtue of the consecutive title wins, Saina now has 64791.2637 points and is just behind Chinese Yihan Wang, while Xin Wang of China is in the third place.
Saina's father Harvir Singh also expressed happiness and hoped her daughter can continue her good work for the country.
“God has been kind. It is a marvellous achievement. I hope she can continue to work hard and win more laurels for the country,” Harvir Singh said.
Saina's next engagement will be the World badminton championship in Paris next month, before playing the Commonwealth Games and Asian Games.
In the men's ranking, the Indian trio of Chetan Anand, P. Kashyap and Arvind Bhatt were at 15th, 25th and 27th spots, respectively, while mixed doubles pair of Jwala Gutta and V. Diju were static at the seventh place. — PTI