[stag_dropcap font_size=”50px” style=”normal”]L[/stag_dropcap]ast week, Delia Zanoschi and Tum Preugpaibul (RCs) announced the winners of the inaugural HBS exceptional athlete awards, an initiative they started this year to recognize the best athletes at HBS. This week, Delia and Tum interviewed HBS Class of 2016 badminton winner Gaurav Varshney in a compelling Q&A.
GAURAV VARSHNEY: BADMInton
Section I, Delhi, India
When you think of badminton, what’s the first thing that comes to mind?
Balance. It’s all about being present on the court and learning to predict. With experience, you know what you can expect from the other person. You have to remain in command on the court at all time. It’s a very fast paced sport unlike many people take it to be. With all the action around you, being in the ‘zone’ at all times is essential.
What influence your coach had on you?
He was a very successful badminton player himself. His dedication towards the sport had a strong influence on me. I was moving from another sport for some personal reasons. Developing a strong dedication towards a new sport and playing it on a professional level was really difficult and my coach was a true source of motivation. It’s all about the competitive spirit you have inside you. He used to call upon what I wanted to do, my instinct. Each game with him was a new challenge that kept my interest afresh and fueled my learning.
What advice would you give to others?
Be committed to whatever you want. Keep on fighting. There’s nothing that you cannot achieve.
While playing a competitive sport, a continuous fighting spirit is something that gets ingrained within you. Dream big! – The struggle to achieve your own dreams and aspirations is the biggest motivator you can have. That’s what my coach used to tell me. Also teamwork, supporting each other in a team is much more important for growth than anything else. When I think of impact, I recall the famous African proverb- If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.
Tell me something you believe in.
I believe in teamwork, in friendships and that innately, everyone has the best intentions. My friendships have kept me afloat and motivated, specially in difficult times. If you have your friends around you, there is nothing that can keep you from achieving anything in life.