first_imgManu and Sumeeth say are like chalk and cheese when it Manu and Sumeeth say are like chalk and cheese when it comes personalities but when they take the court, they bring out the best in each other as is evident from some of the remarkable wins that they have scripted in the last one year to make it to Rio. “Me and Sumeeth are completely opposite. After a match or training, I like to go out and chill with friends and he wants to stay back, always focused and a serious kind of a guy. But we never interfere in each others lives and it never mattered because we are always together when on court, we have a great bonding,” Manu said. One person who has made a big difference to their game is new doubles specialist coach Kim Her Tan of Malaysia. Asked about him, Manu said: “We are playing well. We played well at Mexico open and ABC also. Kim is good in techniques and skills. Other coaches like the Indonesians are good players but may be they are not able to translate it into proper coaching. “But Kim is very good with his analysis of the game. He can see how the opponents are playing. In the German Open, we were down 11-16 and he told us some specific points and we did that and it changed the game completely and we won. “It has been 8-9 months that he has joined and we are playing pretty well. We have improved our consistency,” added the Meerut-born shuttler. It was Kim who had advised Manu to pair up with Ashwini Ponnappa for mixed doubles and target a medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. “We were told by our coach Kim that I and Ashwini can perform well and we should start playing from Syed Modi and eye the 20-20 Olympics,” Manu said. “We had some close matches and we need to understand each other more. It is a long time thing, we want to do well in 2018 Commonwealth Games and other GPG and Superseries tournaments,” he said. Unlike Manu, his doubles partner Sumeeth had started as a singles player and was even ranked No.1 by winning five of the seven finals at national level. But a back injury in 2011 forced him to turn to doubles. He was out of action for around five months in 2011 and after recovering he shifted to doubles and started playing with Manu. The duo won the Senior Nationals in Srinagar in 2012 and then clinched the Tata Open twice back-to-back in 2013 and 2014. Last year, Manu and Sumeeth won the Lagos open in June and broke into the top 20. They also finished runners-up in Gautmela International and then won Belgium International Challenge championship. PTI ATK PM PMadvertisementlast_img read more