Shuttler Anup to get travelling coach

Bangalore, Feb 26 (UNI) Indian ace shuttler Anup Sridhar has a travelling coach of international repute in his attempt to earn a berth in the Bejing Olympics with Tata-Padukone Badminton Academy roping in veteran British coach Thomas John.

Academy Director and former National Coach Vimal Kumar told UNI that the Academy was looking for a travelling coach for the national badminton champion, who is one of many noted shuttlers the Academy had produced, and he was very lucky to get John, who has vast experience.

Being an Indian by origin, John was well-versed with the needs of the shuttlers and their style of play, he said.

The coach would be arriving in March to coach Anup up to the Beijing Olympics in August. ''However, we want to extend his term if the association proves fruitful,'' he said.

Vimal said John was not new to Anup as he had trained under him before. ''John has a British passport and has travelled extensively.

This helps a lot in organising practice sessions abroad and efficiently managing Anup's schedule,'' he said.

Replying to a question, Vimal said Anup had shown very good improvement and he was India's best prospect to qualify for the Beijing games. ''If he gets a berth there is good chance of winning a medal,'' the former National champion predicted.

John's first assignment would be the All England Championship in Birmingham, followed by the Swiss Open, the Indian Open in Hyderabad in April and the Asian Badminton Championship. He had trained Saina Nehwal and P Kashyap at P Gopichand's behest.

The coach, who is heading Badminton Associaton of England, Loborough University Centre, had won British Asian Sports Award for 'Best Coach of the Year'. He had produced many champions in England including Julia Mann, Anders Neilsen and Peter Knowles.

Vimal himself had trained under John's during the 1980.


Story first published: Tuesday, February 26, 2008, 15:34 [IST]
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