Commonwealth Games 2014: We lack in doubles, feels Jwala Gutta

Glasgow: Disappointed to return empty handed from the mixed team event at the Commonwealth Games, India`s star doubles shuttler Jwala Gutta today rued the lack of a specialist mixed doubles player in the side and said it is time the country turns its focus on doubles.

Singles star Parupalli Kashyap and P V Sindhu won their respective matches but Delhi Games silver
medallists, India still lost their tie against Singapore 2-3 to miss out of the bronze medal.

"We are particularly disappointed as we won a silver last time (at Delhi 2010). We were looking to do the same but it is difficult without a specialist mixed doubles player. It affects the team event," Jwala said.

Asked why they came to Glasgow with a shortage of doubles players, Jwala said: "Why? The people who select the team can answer why. There is a lot of pressure on you when you need three matches to win.

"We lack in doubles and it`s time to focus on these events. In Delhi, we played the mixed against Nathan Robertson and Jenny Wallwork of England and they were specialists then. It`s an important part of a team event and we have to focus on it," she said.

On hitting consecutive serves into the net while tied at 20-20 and 21-21 in the second game during their women`s doubles match, Jwala said: "Sometimes you think a lot and then you get nervous and that`s why I served into the net. We saved a couple of match points and it was a great contest. Neither team gave up and it was great to be a part of this match."

Her partner Ashwini Ponnappa too echoed similar voice.

"All the teams have a specialist. It`s just about singles in our country and doubles does not matter and we should focus on doubles," she said.

India coach Madhumita Bist, who was watching Ashwini and Jwala in the women`s doubles decider said: "I had confidence in the girls but it was not to be. I feel terrible."

Bist, who was caught on the big screen with her eyes closed during the final rubber, said: "I was praying. I used to do it when I was playing and sometimes I do it now but I didn`t realise they were showing it."

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