It has been a long time back for shutler Saina Nehwal. The former world No. 1 has struggled for form and fitness since fronting her knee at the Rio Olympics. Now fully recovered and pain-free — save for the occasional rigidity — Nehwal’s challenge is more mental than physical, according to coach Vimal Kumar.
“The main problem is when she lunges at the net. The fear factor is still there,” said Kumar at the Badminton Authority of India enclave. “When you start lunging and taking the shuttle early at the net, your game will become more effective. She is still a little scared at the net and that’s where she is faltering. Otherwise she has fully recovered and is pain-free.”