The oscillation in Joshana Chinappa’s season has ended with the pendulum striking gold or more precisely her victory at the Victoria Open in Australia.
So far this season, the 28-year-old’s performances in international competition has fluctuated like the readings of an ECG machine.
If she has lost early in a tournament she follows it up by advancing to the latter stages of the subsequent one.
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Given the trend, many may have predicted that Chinappa would lose in the first round of the Melbourne-event, especially since she finished her previous tour event, the Hong Kong Open, as a semi-finalist. Yet the world No.27 worked her way up to the final where she beat Line Hansen 11-5, 11-4, 11-9, ranked one place below her.
After competing at the Hong Kong Open in May, India’s No.2 took six weeks off to recover and work on her fitness.
“It was a good break because it gave me a lot of time to train and prepare myself for the second half of the season.”
“There was a lot of time for me to work on my fitness. I did a combination of weight training along with a few other drills during the workout sessions. And I felt good on the day of the final and I just wanted to continue playing the same way,” she adds.
In the final, though she won in straight games, though she admits feeling a degree of pressure after Denmark’s World No.28 attempted a comeback in the third game.
“I actually had to work quite hard to win all the three games, despite what the score suggests.”
The third was the toughest though since she came back strongly. But I’m quite happy I could finish the match in three games,” Chinappa mentions.
Now there is hope that she has found consistency as she is set to play in the Australian Open next week. Interestingly, she arrived at the Victoria Open on the back of winning her 14th Indian national title just two weeks ago.
The domestic championship has been at the receiving end of flak for the disparity in cash prizes between men and women.
The difference has actually driven Dipika Pallikal, the World No.18 and the highest placed Indian player among women’s world rankings — to boycott the event.
Yet despite the financial inequality, the home-based event is one which Chinappa doesn’t take lightly.
“I play the nationals because I want to. I’ve never thought about the prize money at those events and that will not change,” she asserts.