Games & medals
Rio de Janeiro 2016 2016
P. V. Sindhu biography
Pusarla Venkata Sindhu is arguably the most prolific Indian badminton star of the 21st century. As the first Indian woman to win a silver medal at the Olympics and gold at the BWF World Championships, the World Champion is in a class by herself when it comes to Indian badminton in the 21st century.
Along with fellow badminton player Saina Nehwal and boxer Mary Kom, she has been one of the shining beacons for sportswomen in India. Currently ranked at world number seven, shuttler PV Sindhu remains as one of India’s biggest hopes in badminton as the nation gears up for Tokyo 2020.
PV Sindhu was born on July 5, 1995, in Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh to parents who were both volleyball players at the national level, with her father PV Ramana winning the bronze medal at the 1986 Seoul Asian Games. As a result, sport already coursed through her veins from the start.
While her parents may have been volleyball players, badminton caught PV Sindhu’s fancy after watching Pullela Gopichand in action, and by the age of eight, she was a regular at the sport.
The tables were soon turned, however, as Gopichand was the one in awe after watching the young PV Sindhu in action, who had joined the academy bearing his name.
Winning junior badminton titles like the All India Ranking Championship and the Sub-Junior Nationals, PV Sindhu made it clear she would be a player to reckon with once she made it to the international stage.
In 2009, PV Sindhu won the bronze medal in the sub-junior Asian Badminton Championships and a year later, she bagged singles silver in the International Badminton Challenge in Iran
One of the peculiarities about PV Sindhu’s career graph is her steady improvement at annual events year-by-year. This was first apparent at the 2012 Asian Junior Championships when she won the gold medal after scoring a bronze the year prior.
This pattern was repeated at the prestigious World Championships too. After two bronze and two silver medals between 2013 and 2018, she finally held the yellow metal in 2019 after comprehensively beating Japan’s Nozomi Okuhara 21-7, 21-7, and garnering Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s praise.
In her first Commonwealth Games (CWG) in 2014, PV Sindhu won bronze in women’s singles. Four years later, at the 2018 CWG in Gold Coast, she followed it up with a silver and a gold medal in the singles and mixed team badminton event respectively.
Her biggest achievement till date, however, remains the silver medal at Rio 2016. After eliminating Tai Tzu Ying in the round-of-16, she disposed of the second-seeded Wang Yihan and Japanese star Nozumi Okuhara in the quarter-finals and semi-finals respectively. That left her only to have to get by Spain’s Carolina Marin to win the ultimate prize.
While the Indian shuttler bowed down to the Spaniard’s form in all three sets, her silver medal was nonetheless an immense achievement for the nation.
Aside from her international success, PV Sindhu also partakes in the domestic Premier Badminton League, captaining and playing for the Hyderabad Hunters.