Olympic badminton champion Marin hungry for more
Despite having won all major honours in badminton, 23-year-old Spaniard is eyeing further glory
European Championships? Check. All England? Check. World Championships? Check. Olympics? Check.
Spain's top shuttler Carolina Marin has won just about all the major prizes in world badminton by the relatively young age of 23, but she remains unrelenting in her pursuit of excellence.
As the Huelva native told The New Paper after yesterday's OUE Singapore Open press conference at Mandarin Orchard: "I want to be the best women's singles player in history in the world of badminton."
According to Marin, that honour belongs to China's Zhang Ning, who retired after winning the women's singles gold at the 2004 and 2008 Olympics, as well as the 2003 world championships.
The world No. 3 added: "I need one more Olympic title and two more world championships. These are my goals now.
"I want to be world No. 1 again and I will fight to get there. I don't really care about the world rankings. I don't even know what mine is now. But I know to be No. 1, you have to win tournaments.
"My goal this year was to win the All England again, but I couldn't. So I would like to win some Superseries titles and, of course, the main goal is the world championships in August."
Marin, who was seven when she followed her best friend to a badminton hall for the first time, candidly revealed her struggles in spite of all her success.
She said: "I've already won everything... It is very difficult to always keep focused.
"I had to cancel tournaments due to injury and sometimes I was mentally too tired.
AT HER BEST AT RIO
"For me, my best was at the Rio Olympics last August and I know it is really difficult to keep up such form and focus at such a high level for a year or 1½ years.
"My coach and I agreed that we have to think more for the future now that our dreams have come true after winning gold medals at the major tournaments.
"You are at the top, you have to come down a little bit and then you fight to reach the top again."
Even with seven other female shuttlers from the world's top 10 featuring in the OUE Open at the Singapore Indoor Stadium this week, Marin still looks like a force to be reckoned with, after she made it to the finals of the India Open and Malaysia Open in the past fortnight.
"I will try to reach another final and win another title. I know there are many tough games from the beginning, but I'm looking forward to the start on Wednesday," she said.
Among those standing in her way is Thailand's world No. 7 Ratchanok Intanon, who beat her at this year's All England.
The 22-year-old has had her share of injuries that derailed her Olympic bid, but has recovered to "99 per cent".
Said Ratchanok: "It's exciting to come back to play as defending champion and I will do all I can to protect it.
"It's hard to say who my main competitors will be because the top players are all very close in form.
"On my part, I can still increase the variety of my shots to stay unpredictable because opponents can learn about my game from YouTube. I know, because I do that too."