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Shuttler Kashyap hopes Austrian Open triumph precursor of successful 2018


New Delhi, Feb 25: Indian shuttler Parupalli Kashyap hopes the title win in the Austrian Open will lead to a good season as he aims to climb up the rankings.

World No.44 Kashyap thrashed June Wei Cheam of Malaysia 23-21, 21-14 in just 37 minutes in the final in Vienna on Saturday night as the 2014 Commonwealth Games champion stepped on the podium after a span of about three years.

Due to injuries for the past few years, Kashyap's rankings have taken a hit. He was not named in the national squad for the CWG 2018 in April. Kidambi Srikanth and H.S. Prannoy are ranked ahead of the 2012 Olympic quarter-finalist.

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"I am feeling good about winning a tournament after a long time. Just want to thank Gopi (Chand) Sir and all the coaching staff at the academy," Kashyap said in a release. 

"I have worked really hard for a while now and want to keep winning and keep the momentum going in my favour so that I can progress through the rankings gradually," he added.

The 31-year-old from Hyderabad wants to break into the top 30 by the end of June. 

"There are no major tournaments for me until May or June so by then I hope I can make it to the top 30," he said.

On his CWG non-selection, Kashyap said: "I think injuries took a toll on my qualification for CWG as I couldn't get my ranking up in time but the credit goes to the players who qualified and are worthy of their spot. 

"Srikanth and Prannoy have been exceptional in the last six months and they deserve to be representing India at the Commonwealth Games and I hope the team can return with medals."

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