HS Prannoy faces health concerns amidst Thomas Cup 2024

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HS Prannoy

HS Prannoy, a seasoned Indian shuttler, has been battling a chronic gastrointestinal disorder for the past four months. This health issue, which had troubled him in the past, has resurfaced, causing both physical and mental distress.

Prannoy was diagnosed with gastroesophageal reflux disease during the 2018 World Championships. This chronic disorder causes symptoms like heartburn, abdominal and chest pain, and inflammation of vocal cords. Prannoy’s training and performance were affected by it in 2019-2020. However, he had recovered from it and the after-effects of COVID-19 to slowly and steadily regain his place in the top echelons of men’s singles.

HS Prannoy faces health scare in Thomas Cup

Unfortunately, the health issue has returned, causing him to lose around four kilograms in the last couple of months. Prannoy revealed that his condition took a lot of time to get diagnosed. As a result, he was playing with the health problem, and it was taking a mental as well as physical toll on him.

This season, Prannoy had just one semifinal finish – at the India Open Super 750 – and made a series of first-round exits. However, he showed signs of recovery during the Asia Badminton Championship in Ningbo, China, where he outwitted China’s Lu Guang Zu in a marathon 90-minute opening-round match.

Despite the health scare, Prannoy recently recorded a win over Harry Huang during India’s 2024 Thomas Cup fixture against England on April 29. He is looking forward to making a strong comeback.

“What I was feeling was when I eat the food doesn’t go down,” Prannoy said. “Whenever I train, the food comes up and forward to the chest side and I need to vomit. It is kind of related to acid reflux obviously. The food is not able to get down. I can feel the food coming out, that’s where my breathing goes for a toss.”

This illness forced Prannoy to consume liquid foods and sometimes train without eating, which caused the weight loss. “I couldn’t eat much because I was afraid it would affect the playing schedule. I was ok to not eat and play; the nausea was even worse than not having anything in the stomach. So that’s why I lost 4-4.5 kilos in the last two-three months.”

Subsequently, after multiple tests, the problem has been identified and the shuttler needs to keep the condition under check.

“Once you figure out what it is, it’s a bit easier for you to trust the process. If you don’t figure it out you’re just shooting in the dark and expecting things to happen, and that’s what we were doing in the first two-three months. Doctors say it can be solved with medication. I can feel a lot of difference in the last month,” Prannoy added.

HS Prannoy played a pivotal role in India’s epic Thomas Cup win in 2022. He went on to claim a bronze medal at the World Championships and the Asian Games, won his maiden Super 500 title at Malaysia Masters, and then finished runner-up at the Australian Open in a memorable 2023.

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