Not feeling inferior compared to others and self-belief were the key to the success for Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty against better doubles pairs, the former said on Monday.
Rankireddy and his partner Shetty became the first Indian men’s doubles pair to win a Super 500 event. The Indian pair won the Thailand Open title on Sunday.
“I am very happy to win the tournament. I am still watching videos on how I played,” Rankireddy said. “We played like champions. We never felt inferior.”
He also revealed that they idolised a few players whom they beat during the competition and one such pair was Ko Sung Hyun and Shin Baek Cheol of South Korea. Rankireddy and Shetty defeated the Korean pair in the semi-finals.
“They [Hyun and Cheol] were idols for both of us. We had learnt a lot watching them perform,” he said.
Rankireddy hoped that the win will bring focus on doubles players in India. Many star singles players including Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth congratulated the duo for their win.
“I got many messages that doubles will now get due recognition because of us. feel slowly people would start recognizing doubles,” Rankireddy said.
Shetty said that is a lot of scope for improvement and if they continue to be on the right path, they can break into the top five of the doubles ranking. He also hoped to defend their Hyderabad Open title.
“There are expectations because we won Thailand Open,” Shetty said. “This time around, there are a lot more players because since it’s an Olympic year. The competition is lot more tougher this time. But, we beat the current world champions. We have to give our best. If we play well, we can win this tournament.”