As India basks in the success story of PV Sindhu, one man is quietly doing his job in the background, preparing the Hyderabad girl for her biggest test of her career today (August 19). (Who is Sindhu?)
Pullela Gopichand is training his pupil Sindhu to plot the downfall of world number one Carolina Marin of Spain in the Rio Olympics badminton singles final on Friday.
Sindhu is the toast of the nation since yesterday (August 18) after reaching the final following her last-four stage win over Japan's Nozomi Okuhara 21-19, 21-10.
Behind the feel-good script of history-maker Sindhu, there is Gopichand. He inspired Sindhu and many others in India to take to the sport. Before Gopichand it was the legendary Prakash Padukone. (Gopi talks on his split with Saina)
Both Prakash and Gopichand decided to give back to the sport after their retirement. Prakash started his own academy in Bangalore and Gopichand unveiled a world-class facility in his name in Hyderabad.
It is no easy job to produce a champion. Be it any sport, there is a lot of hard work, sacrifice needed to get to the top.
Hours and hours of training, under the guidance of Gopichand has seen Sindhu rise to a new level today.
No Indian had reached an Olympic badminton final before Sindhu. What an incredible feat it has been. And she is deservedly getting all the attention, be it on social media or elsewhere.
Right through her stint at Rio Olympics, Gopichand's calming influence by the court side has helped Sindhu.
Sindhu's parents acknowledged the efforts of Gopichand after she reached the gold medal contest. In badminton, it is all what Gopichand says which her daughter listens to, mother P Vijaya, who is a former volleyball player, said. Sindhu's father PV Ramana is also an ex-volleyballer player.
It was Gopichand who was instrumental in giving India the champion shuttler Saina Nehwal. However, now she trains under U Vimal Kumar in Bangalore.
Thanks to Gopichand, India won its first ever badminton medal at Olympics. Saina won a bronze in London 2012.
Gopichand himself knows how to win the big tournaments. In 2001, he clinched the prestigioius All England Championship. He is only the second Indian to take the coveted trophy after Prakash (1980).
Not only Sindhu and Saina, there is also Kidambi Srikanth, who narrowly missed out on reaching Rio Olympics semi-finals, who is part of Gopichand's academy.
Apart from the big names representing India, there are plenty of youngsters under Gopichand's care who are aiming to reach higher. We might see them soon with success like Saina and Sindhu.
In Brazil, Sindhu has been unbeaten going into the final. Whenever she struggled on court, it was Gopichand who was there giving her constant advice.
Thanks to Gopichand, Sindhu is playing the biggest match of her career so far. Sindhu and India needs his advice, strategy to welcome a gold tonight.