Sharath Kamal hopes to win a table tennis medal for the country in his last Olympics

New Delhi. Veteran table tennis player Achanta Sharath Kamal, who is busy preparing for his fifth Olympics, is hopeful that this time the Olympic medal drought in the sport will end despite the tough challenge in Paris. Sharath Kamal, the flag bearer of the Indian team for the Paris Olympics, is currently training in Germany.

Sharath, who led the Indian men’s team in Paris, said in a ‘virtual’ interaction organized by the Sports Authority of India, “For the first time we will play in team (men and women) events. There is so much tough competition in the Olympics. I have medals from the Commonwealth Games (13 medals including seven gold), Asian Games (two bronze). I am just missing an Olympic medal. I hope that this time I can win this medal for the country, the sports federation and myself.”

He said, “In team events, doubles is the most important because we start with it. If we have a good start, our confidence grows.” Sharath believes that along with physical fitness, mental strength will be important in winning medals and a lot of work is being done on team strength in the training sessions. He said, “There is an emphasis on strengthening the team because there will be pressure from everyone’s expectations. Olympics is a ‘festival of sports’, where there are top athletes of every sport and if you want to achieve success, you have to enjoy the pressure and play. There are young players, some of whom are playing their first Olympics. But everyone has to deal with the pressure. We have to keep our focus on our performance. ”

This will be the last Olympics for 41-year-old Sharath, who made his Olympic debut in 2004. In his two-decade career, Sharath has also seen a time when players had to make rounds of the Sports Ministry for their smallest needs. Sharath said, “When I participated in the first Olympics in 2004, I was very young. There was no such support then. It was the same till 2008, then the players themselves had to take care of every aspect, from coach to equipment. But since 2016, with the help and guidance of TOPS, the players’ job is to focus only on their game.

Disclaimer: CricketInFocus has not edited this news. This news has been published from PTI-language feed.

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