Klavdia Mayorova: “The pair Ivanov-Sozonov can make into the top eight”

The TOTAL BWF World Championships 2018 to be held
in Nanjing, China from Monday 30th July – Sunday 05 August 2018. Head coach of Russian national team Klavdia Mayorova told about the preparation for the tournament and about the tasks, set before our team.

– The best badminton players of the country have been living in Vladivostok for a week already, Mayorova said. — First of all we are adapting to the time zone and the humidity, and secondly the  Russian Open tournament will be held in the capital of Primorye next week.

– Is this a preparatory tournament before the performance in China?

– The Russian Open is a traditional tournament, which usually takes place in the second half of July, in Vladivostok. However, this year the Badminton World Federation has moved the World Championships to earlier date and it happend so that the Russian tournament precedes the World Championships.

– What can we expect from Nanjing?

– Of course, we will strive to perform as well as possible. It would be good to achieve top eight in one of the disciplines. The Russian badminton team has not shown such result since 1997, when in the quarterfinals Nikolay Zuev played in pair with Andrey Antropov, who is now heading our national federation.

– However, two years ago at the Rio Olympics Ivanov and Sozonov also made it to the top eight. In addition, they are champions of the Europe 2014 and bronze medalists of the 2016 and 2018 Continental Championships.

– We also have the Olympic bronze medal, won by the pair Nina Vislova and Valeria Sorokina. But in Badmiton the level of the World Championships is higher  than that of the Olympic tournament. It is more difficult to get there, but it is easier to show good result. You see, at the Games each country can be represented by a maximum of two athletes or two duets in each discipline, provided that both occupy very high places in the world ranking. While at the World Championships a country like China can rest four participants or four pairs at once.

– Should we expect that the Chinese, the leaders of the world Badminton, will dominate at the Championships, which will take place in their country?

– They know how to prepare for each particular start. Not always do they shine in all categories at the tournaments during the season, but at the World Championships they show good results.

– Are you looking to the 2020 Olympics already?

– The qualification for them will start one year before the competitions. Now we are fighting for the opportunity to start from the good position there.

– Who of our athletes has the best chance to take high place in Nanjing?

– Ivanov and Sozonov do. They show good results during the tournaments, but are not always stable. Honestly, they are the only ones, who have a chance to proceed to the top eight.

– And what about Evgenia Kosetskaya, silver medalists of the April European Championships, held in Huelva, Spain?

– It will be more difficult for her, because in women’s Badminton Europe lags far behind Asia. Only Rio Olympic champion Carolina Marin (Spain) can fight for a medal (she is also the world champion of 2014 and 2015, and four-time winner of the European Championships in singles – 2014, 2016, 2017, 2018). But Evgenia is no match for Marin. If she makes it to the top 16, it will be super.

The composition of the Russian team to perform in Nanjing is as follows:

men’s singles – Vladimir Malkov, Sergey Sirant;

women’s singles – Evgenia Kosetskaya, Natalia Perminova;

men’s doubles – Vladimir Ivanov / Ivan Sozonov, Konstantin Abramov / Aleksandr Zinchenko, Evgeniy Dremin / Denis Grachev;

women’s doubles –  Ekaterina Bolotova / Alina Davletova;

mixed doubles – Evgeniy Dremin / Evgeniya Dimova; Rodion Alimov / Alina Davletova.