Hyderabad: Having made the country proud by winning medals in the Commonwealth Games, shuttlers Parupalli Kashyap, P V Sindhu and R M V Gurusai Dutt today returned to their hometown here to a heroic welcome.
"I am very happy. I won a title after a long time. After in 2012, I won a title for India. I am happy that I won a gold at the Commonwealth Games. I won a bronze last time. I did not expect that I will get better but I wanted to be in the podium. Winning a gold is always special," Kashyap told reporters after landing here flanked by Sindhu, Gurusai Dutt and chief national coach Pulella Gopichand.
Expressing happiness over the achievements of his wards, Gopichand said Kashyap`s win meant a lot for the sport in the country.
"We have worked hard over the last few years. He (Kashyap) has improved a lot. Off course, there are areas you can improve upon and you need to keep working. I am happy for his fantastic result. It means a lot for Indian badminton as well," Gopichand said.
Though disappointed for not winning the yellow metal, young female shuttler Sindhu expressed happiness for bagging a bronze in her first Commonwealth Games appearance.
"I am happy to have won the bronze medal but I could have played better. Due to some mistakes, I lost in the semifinals. But I came back strongly to win the bronze. So I am happy for it," Sindhu said.
Gurusai Dutt said it was a great feeling to have won a bronze medal for the country in what also is his maiden Commonwealth Games.
"It is a great feeling. Winning a bronze medal in the Commonwealth Games is a very big thing for me. I am really happy with the way I played," he said.
Gopichand later said that competition at the international level was increasingly getting tougher day-by-day and the Indian shuttlers need to step up.
"Competitions are tough nody is relaxed world over. They are all working hard. We need to keep pushing as well. We need to consistently work hard to sustain our success. The level I am talking of is of the highest level and it is important we keep pushing each and every day."