The Modern Day Dhronacharya…..Gopi Chand!

A year back not many would have know PV Sindhu, but today she may be the most talked person in India. Her win in Olympics 2016 was not just a day”™s, months or a year hard work but a relentless effort of 12 long years. And the man behind her who has stood rock hard is none other than Gopi Chand. Today he is known as the modern day Dhronacharya who has gifted India the best gems in Badminton, Saina, Srikanth and now Sindhu. People today proudly say they come from Gopichand Academy. But it wasn”™t the same situation 15 years back.

When Gopichand planned to start his own academy he had nothing but a small piece of land which was gifted by CM Chandrababu Naidu. But the money wasn”™t sufficient to build a world class institution to provide the best training and facilities. But Nim­magadda Prasad of the Matrix Group Company came forward to help Gopichand for his dream project. He donated a sum of 2 crore rupees from which the academy was built. In the coming years the academy attracted many students and funds for improvisation with modern gym equipments, running track, swimming pool and health centre. Gopichand has struggled hard to build the academy of his dreams and has almost spent 15 long years. Champions like Saina Nehwal, Srikanth and Sindhu were some of his most early students who have been associated with the academy. Their dream of winning Olympic medal was a decade long journey.

Sindhu”™s interest in badminton started from a very young age of 10, though both her parents were volleyball players she was more attracted towards badminton. It was then she joined the Gopichan Academy in Hyderabad. Earlier Sindhu”™s family lived almost 30 km away from the academy and had to travel almost 120 km every day for her morning and evening sessions. But then the family moved to a closer place so Sindhu did not have to spend more time travelling. Sindhu as a kid was a very shy and silent girl which Gopichand always complained about and wanted an aggressive Sindhu and be more expressive in the court. He has nurtured Sindhu from the age of 10, supporting her in every step. He parents remembers how Gopichand used to come to the academy as early at 4.30 in the morning with Sindhu so she did not feel she was alone in the journey. His son also used to accompany him and they used to train together. Although Gopichand seems to be a soft spoken silent man, he is a hard task master and determined.

It”™s the same in case with Saina Nehwal and Srikanth as well, Gopichand has a special ability to recognize the talents and nurture them to be world class players. His ambition has always been to bring glory to India and to encourage the players to fight till the end.

The glory brought by these people is a collective efforts their coach, parents and trainers and numerous sacrifices to achieve one big thing in life.

And hence today the Gopichand Academy stands tall in shaping some of the best talents in India. While we are cherishing the victory of Sindhu, there may be little Sindhus, Sainas and Srikanths in the making under the very roof of Gopichand academy dreaming to bring home GOLD in 2020 Olympics.

Aishwarya S


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