Elated at becoming the first Indian male shuttler to win a gold at the Commonwealth Games in 32 years, Parupalli Kashyap on Sunday said his childhood dream of bagging a yellow metal for the country has finally come true.
"In this kind of big game to win gold is a big deal for me. It's like a dream. I have dreamt of this since I was a child," Kashyap said after clinching gold with a 21-14 11-21 21-19 win over Derek Wong of Singapore in the finals of men's singles in Glasgow.
"I'm so happy. This championship means a lot to me. These Games come every four years and that's what drove me on.
"I knew when I came into the tournament I wanted the gold medal. I have not played up to my ability but I've made it through. I am just so happy for myself and for my country," he added.
The 27-year-old shuttler from Hyderabad, who had won a bronze in the last edition of the Games in Delhi and had reached the quarterfinals of the London Olympics, said he finally broke the jinx by reaching the finals of a multi-discipline event.
"I broke the jinx yesterday and I was really looking forward to the final.
"This was a very important win for me. I needed this win. I came in as the second seed and I have broken my jinx," said Kashyap. Having won the first game comfortably, Kashyap faltered in the next and the world No. 22 said he became "too tense".
"I won the first set comfortably but in the second set he showed why he reached the final.
"I was becoming too tense. In my mind I believed I could win easily because I didn't think he could play such a good game, so I wasn't ready because in my mind I had already won," Kashyap revealed.
Asked about his goals in the future, Kashyap said, "I have got four or five years left in me and now I want to win big medals and big championships."