Ashwini Ponnappa set roar in mixed doubles
Badminton player Ashwini Ponnappa is set for a new journey and is “very greedy” for her career ahead, she chuckles, brimming with the start of a plan. Although, away from the game currently, she has decided to not continue her partnership with N. Sikki Reddy anymore.
Starting from scratch, the mixed doubles, will partner with the 22-year-old Sai Pratheek Krishnaprasad. Pratheek was playing doubles with Ishan Bhatnagar and now the new pair wants to give a great start to their partnership, without any pressure.
“We basically want to see how it goes for the next two-three months. I enjoy mixed doubles, and I’m keen to start off and work on our combination but not be too stressed about an xyz ranking or xyz tournament,” says India’s multiple medal-winning doubles shuttler. “It will be about finding the right understanding and sync, rather than targeting specific tournaments. Of course, I’d love to qualify for Paris (Olympics) with a good standing, but that’s a very long way to go,” said Pratheek Krishnaprasad.
Pratheek is an exciting talent, with rear-court skills, plus reliable in defence having played men’s doubles.
“We’ll see how it shapes up. I’m not someone who will insist to a junior that you have to play with me. I’m optimistic this will work, but if it doesn’t, no hard feelings,” she says of a calmer pace of goal setting.
“Of course, you can’t compare our partnership with me & Jwala’s. We don’t have as many results. But we both worked hard and gave it our best. Sikki is a go-getter and very hardworking. She’ll do well with her next partner,” said Ashwini Ponnappa.