“I feel wonderful right now,” said Yildiz after her 21-17 21-8 win over India’s Parul Dalsukhbhai Parmar in SL3 women’s singles at the Thailand Para Badminton International 2023.
“I’ve been playing for five years and I feel like I’m steadily improving. Other than Parmar, I see (Manasi Girishchandra) Joshi as a huge obstacle but whoever I’m playing I’m always excited before a match. I very rarely get nervous,” she added.
Teammate Tuzcu triumphed in his SU5 men’s singles match against Poland’s Bartlomiej Mroz, 21-13 17-21 24-22.
“I understand Bart’s game because he’s my men’s doubles partner. We are friends, he’s a great guy but I’m glad I won,” said Tuzcu, who had to give Tokyo 2020 Paralympics a miss due to a hamstring injury.
Having trained with the same coach, Fatih Yuksel, since he started playing badminton 18 years ago, Tuzcu said: “My focus is Paris 2024.”
“There’s never an easy match. I appreciate every opponent works hard and deserves to be on the podium. I don’t think I’m the best just because I’m world champion,” she said.
“I’ve been playing since 2021 and this is my first international win ever,” said an elated Mohamed. “It’s an incredible feeling. When I stepped onto the court I didn’t think I could win. With each point I felt better and with my coach’s guidance I felt I could manage this. I had to change my style but it worked.”