Tokyo: India’s top paddler Achanta Sharath Kamal stated he has no plans to retire anytime soon after his Tokyo Olympics campaign got over following his third-round defeat to legendary Ma Long in the men’s singles on Tuesday.
Competing in his fourth Olympics, Sharath Kamal lost the opening game against Long but made a stunning comeback winning the second against the legendary Chinese paddler. However, the Indian lost the next three to bow out.
“His legs were shaking. I could see him shake. And I was happy I could put him in that position. As far as this Olympics go, there are a lot of positives for me,” Sharath Kamal, who had reached the Round of 32 at the quadrennial showpiece for the first time, was quoted as saying by olympics.com.
“We were maybe a little unfortunate with the draw, running into the team that won the bronze in the first round of mixed doubles. And facing Long in the third round,” he added. Earlier, he and Manika Batra lost in the first round of mixed team event at the Tokyo Olympics.
“Against Long, I got myself into a good position. Even the fourth and fifth games were a lot closer than the score suggested. I think after winning the third game he just became a little more relaxed and started going for his shots,” he said.
“I never said this is going to be my last Olympics, it’s mainly the media that has been saying that. I don’t think I have to retire just because I am 38 years of age. This is the most physically fit I have been and it has undoubtedly been my best Olympics. When I look back, there nothing I could have done more or done differently. I have no regrets,” Sharath Kamal, who made his Olympics debut in 2004, said.