India’s top squash player Saurav Ghosal and former world champion and World No.1 Gregory Gaultier of France were engaged in a 40-minute practice session at the Indian Squash Academy here on Monday.
Watching the action by the courtside was another player, Harinderpal Singh.
“Look at that, man! Not everyday you get a player of Gaultier’s calibre to practice. You learn a lot just by observing his movements, how he positions himself for shots,” gushed Harinderpal.
Saurav appeared tired yet cheerful. The 39-year-old Frenchman, who will be in Chennai to train the Indian senior teams for the Birmingham Commonwealth Games for the next 12 days, hoped his stay will help India reap a rich medal haul at Birmingham.
Speaking to Sportstar, Gaultier said, “I am happy being here, trying to help the Indian boys and girls in their preparations for CWG; that’s the main goal. I hope I can bring as much energy and as much knowledge as possible. Had a nice session with Joshna (Chinappa) in the morning (Monday), where I gave her quite a few tips. I have been friends with Saurav for a long time. Indians can win a medal in both singles and doubles. I wish the best for them,” he said.
Since making his debut on the PSA tour in 2000 (he retired in 2021), Gaultier has won a record 44 tour titles out of 83 finals and has been at the top for 20 months. Detailing what it takes to remain at the top, he said, “It takes a lot of discipline and sacrifices to be made throughout your career. You need to have a good team with you – a good fitness coach, mental coach and physio. That’s why I was able to stay at the top for as long as possible. It was the best experience of my life,” Gautlier, who trains junior players across the USA and Prague, said.