Anup Sridhar engages veteran badminton coach Tom John

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New Delhi, Mar 18 (UNI) National champion Anup Sridhar has recently signed on veteran badminton coach Tom John as his personal travelling coach.

John, who has over two decades of coaching experience in the UK and on international badminton circuits, has coached Prakash Padukone, Vimal Kumar, Pullela Gopichand and a host of other national and international stars during his illustrous coaching career.

He was been the Bristish team's Singles Coach at the Barcelona Olympics in 1992, the Sydney Olympics in 2000 and the Athens Olympics in2004.

He has also been the National Coach of Portugal and England for extended stints and most recently was running the London High Performance Centre for the 2012 Olympics.

John would travel with Sridhar on the national and international circuits. While in Bangalore he would involve himself along side Prakash Padukone and Vimal Kumar at the Tata Padukone Academy in Bangalore.

Sridhar is currently the highest ranked Indian male badminton player and number 29 world ramkings and is on the verge of qualifying for the Beijing Olympics. He has had numerous impressive results in recent times, entering the quarter-finals of the World Badminton Championships in 2007 (beating Athens Olympics gold medalist Taufik Hidayat along the way) and repeatedly beating and challenging the best players in the world.

John, who is excited about this engagement said,''I believe that Anup has what it takes to claim his rightful place among the best in the world and it is with this belief that I have taken on this assignment.'' ''This is a big step in the right direction for Indian badminton.

It is crucial for players to get instant feedback and support when they are competing or training abroad and it is my privilege to take on this challenge,'' he added.

Sridhar was delighted about the development and said,''Tom and I have been travelling and working together for a few weeks now.

Having someone of his experience by your side every step of the way makes a huge difference and I am confident that I will be able to make the most of what Tom has to offer. I would like to thank my employer Bharat Petroleum who has made this relationship with Tom financially possible. It is a big step in my career and I appreciate the support I am receiving.'' UNI AB JT RN2157

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