Ahead of high-flying Team India’s high-intensity semi-finals clash against New Zealand, India’s first individual Olympic gold medal-winning shooter Abhinav Bindra has some solid advice for Men in Blue as the hosts gear up to take on the 2019 runner-up. Unbeaten in the tournament Rohit Sharma-led side will take on New Zealand in the semi-finals of the ongoing in the ICC World Cup 2023 at the iconic Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on Wednesday. Taking to X (formerly known as Twitter), Olympic gold medallist Bindra has penned a heartfelt note and suggested his view to India on handling pressure. Bindra suggested the players need to live in the present moment and stick to their routines as this will transform pressure into performance.

“As the boys in blue gear up for the semi-final, here are my two cents on handling pressure – though not that they need any lessons on pressure, given their amazing performances so far. Remember, the present moment is like a perfect shot – it’s all you’ve got. Stay in it. Your routine is your ritual – it’s what turns pressure into performance. Stick to it, but don’t be afraid to throw in a googly and adapt when the situation demands. Crisis? That’s just another word for ‘I’m about to make history’. So when the going gets tough, the tough don’t just get going, they dig deep and build a skyscraper right there,” Bindra said.

The Olympic gold medallist emphasises that the players have to embrace the stress because “pressure is like your shadow in the afternoon sun” and recommends not to run away from it, but rather embrace it.

“Lastly, pressure is like your shadow in the afternoon sun – it might look big, but it’s not heavier than a cricket ball. Don’t run from it. Embrace it, high-five it, and you’ll learn to dance with it on the pitch. So go ahead, knock it out of the park, but remember, if you find yourself in a sticky wicket, there’s nothing that a deep breath and a calm head can’t fix,” he added.

The Men in Blue have won nine consecutive matches at this year’s World Cup, putting them in position to add a third trophy to their collection after previous triumphs in 1983 and 2011.

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