“It takes a lot of sacrifices to achieve something in life,” says doubles and mixed-doubles Badminton player, Sikki Reddy. In 2016, she hasn’t just won the Brazil and Russia Open Grand Prix Titles, she also won the Gold Medal at the South Asian Games with her partner Pranaav Jerry Chopra.
For the 24-year-old, it was a chance summer camp in Hyderabad at the age of eight, were among 200 kids, the coaches took time out to commend her inherent and exceptional skills with the Badminton racquet.
“There was a time when I used to travel 100 km every day to get to the stadium. But since our coach (Pullela Gopichand) opened his academy we have all moved closer so that we can train extensively.”
“In 2003, I started training seriously for the game. There was a time when I used to travel 100 km every day to get to the stadium. But since our coach (Pullela Gopichand) opened his academy we have all moved closer so that we can train extensively,” says the athlete who was home tutored for the better part of her childhood.
Sometimes Reddy doesn’t even get a Sunday to herself. And as for the rest of the week, her day starts at 5.30 and with a few breaks in between training continues till 7.30 in the evening. Admittedly, she just eats, sleeps and plays badminton and the superb facilities at the Gopichand Academy ensure that the players have all the resources available to focus solely on the game.
“The concept of equality should start at home”
The Warangal native feels that for any woman to pursue an off-beaten track, support of the family is of utmost importance, “The concept of equality should start at home,” she says.
While it’s true that she misses out on being with her family during festivals like Dusshera and Diwali, even a Sunday in with her folks or just going shopping helps her recover from her hectic week ahead. And as far as friends are concerned, “Because I have been training since a very young age, barring two or three school friends, most of my friends are from the Badminton academy itself.” She is also engaged to fellow doubles player Sumeeth Reddy.
Reddy believes in taking one day at a time and she is currently training for the Dubai Super Series followed by the Commonwealth and Asian games next year. Her ultimate goal? Winning a medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
In spite of her recent slew of wins Reddy adds, “losing makes you stronger. There are other opportunities awaiting you. This is not the end.”
Photo Credit: aa badminton photo