'Great chance to have best medal haul at 2018 CWG'
Odense: With India achieving unprecedented success this season, Kidambi Srikanth feels it will be a great chance for his country to return with their best ever medal haul in badminton from next year's Commonwealth Games.
"Last time we had won a good number of medals and now we are playing much better than what we were four years back and we have a great chance of winning more medals this time," Srikanth said here ahead of his opening match against compatriot Subhankar Dey at the Denmark Open.
"We have also the mixed doubles and men's doubles players doing well, apart from the men's singles. So we have a pretty good team this time," he said.
Just a fortnight before the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games, Srikanth had collapsed in the washroom at the Gopichand academy with a brain disease and had to be rushed to the ICU.
He spent over a week at the hospital before returning to action at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.
More than three years have passed ever since and now he laughs off at the incident. "I had comeback from a small disease and I wasn't in good shape. It was some sort of a virus, I don't even know the name. Nobody even wanted to tell me that," he laughs.
"But I was playing good enough so I returned and played at the Commonwealth Games but lost to the Singapore guy. But now after four years, I think I am much more confident after all the experience of the last one year, so it will be different," he added.
Srikanth is likely to clash with local hero and World Champion Viktor Axelsen in the quarterfinals of the ongoing Denmark Open Super Series premier and the Indian said he did not have any past baggage despite the straight game losses that he suffered in the last three outings.
"He has definitely grown as a player. I won against him twice, both the times in the finals of Swiss and India Open and the last three times he came out on top. We have different body types. Everytime we play it is different," said Srikanth. "I once played against him in Dubai in my fifth continuous tournament in 2015 and I couldn't push myself and then I played against him at India Open this year. I was coming back from injury and he was on top of his game and he outplayed me and the last time was in Japan and it could have been anyone's game at 17-all in first game.