“I was not thinking about the Asian Games, I had to win the tournament” – Siril Verma

Nazeer Adoni/GoBadminton

Ambika Asthana Image Courtesy: Nazeer Adoni/GoBadminton 29 Jun, 2018

The World No. 1 junior badminton player and sports enthusiast is insanely calm and quiet off-court which is oh-so-contrasting to his aggressive persona that blows off his opponents in no time. Such smooth drops shots, smacking smashes and lovely backhand, Siril is a legend in making. 


Rooted, firm and disciplined are just some of the adjectives that perfectly describe this 20-something Indian guy-next-door. Thwarting over the seniors and blasting off with every score, Siril made us comfortable as we sat with him for a face-to-face interview.


GB: What was your take on the All India Senior Ranking Tournament and how did it help you as a player?


SV: After a long time, I’m playing a tournament and since it was a selection ground for the Asian Games, I was not at all thinking about that at all.  Only winning was on my mind to boost my confidence level. I didn’t play any Indian tournament for quite a while and last time when I did, I lost in it which shattered my confidence.


GB: What was your strategy for the All India Senior Ranking Badminton Tournament?


SV: I lost to Lakshya Sen in the Bangalore Senior Ranking Tournament and I got a wild card entry for the Hyderabad tournament. I just knew that I had to give my 100% in this. I don’t follow a certain strategy, I play to win. We all practise together and Saurabh (Verma) is more of a rally person, so I was on an attacking mode and aggressive on court.


GB: Who was your toughest rival on court?


SV: Saurabh Verma is indeed a great player and he’s the biggest rival on-court for me. Besides, I play regularly with Laksya Sen, so no biggie.


GB: What is your take on the rise of badminton in India?


SV: I started my career in badminton 10 years back at the Pullela Gopichand Academy. All the great players have been trained here. It’s a great platform to be trained and mentored by such prolific players. People are getting enlightened and exposure now, children are taking up this sport and performing equally well. I hope we continue to inspire fellow Indians and make it a bigger sport in the coming times.


GB: What is your fitness regime?


SV: We have a morning workout session and the evening off-court workout session which involves running, strength training, agility exercises etc.


GB: How do you calm yourself off-court?


SV: I enjoy the entire process of training. I do feel tired but it gives me a happy high.


GB: What are your other interests?


SV: I love playing cricket, tennis and watching movies with friends.

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