Gopichand trains for Danish Open

All England champion P Gopichand trains for the Danish Open in Hyderabad, will leave for Copenhagen on Sunday.

updated: February 25, 2007 08:37 IST
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A boil under his left foot, a twisted ankle and a torn ligament - none of these injuries have deterred All England champion P Gopichand from battling on. Gopi is now training for the Danish Open. He admits he is not 100 per cent fit but is determined to vary his tactics in order to adapt to the new 7-point format. On Sunday, Gopi leaves for Copenhagen to play in the Danish Open, the last major tournament of the year. However, there is a question mark over his fitness, as Gopi has not recovered fully from his injury. "Things have been alright and I am moving pretty well. I wouldn't say I am in the best of conditions but I think it is worth a try,'' contends the champion. National badminton coach S M Arif remarked, "After an injury when you are coming back, it takes a little time for you to adjust to the court. Suddenly if he is pitched against a very good player right in the initial stage, he may be troubled. But if he gets one or two players, by playing whom he can adjust to the court and the shuttle, I am sure he can trouble any player in the world.'' The triumph at the All England event was the perfect start to the year for Gopi. Subsequent injuries have seen him slip in world rankings and he is in the 10th slot now. Gopi says he will try out a few different tactics at the Danish Open. "A few changes I have done. I have been playing a lot of short games, a lot of doubles to make sure that I can adapt better to the 7-point format. I have also been working on my defence, because with the new format, it is important that the points get faster. So you have to be better at the short games." After the Indonesian Open, Gopi spent a week in Indonesia practicing with former world number three, Kurniahu. However, Kurniahu's club refused to spare his services when Gopi approached him on behalf of the Andhra Pradesh government to coach youngsters in Hyderabad. Gopi will practice in England after the Danish Open.