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Jacco Arends: 'I did not play at my best level'

We spoke to Jacco Arends (Netherlands), the most successful player of last week's Croatian International about his performances at the tournament in Zagreb, his cances to qualify for the London Olympics and his "best stroke".

Jacco, is it your first international ”double-win”?

Croatia was indeed my first tournament where I won the doubles as well as the mixed doubles. It was a pretty exhausting week for me, but I'm really delighted that my partners Ilse Vaessen and Jelle Maas and I were able to pull this off.

How happy are you with your own performance in Croatia?

I won all my matches so of course I am really happy with my performance, especially in the doubles. On the other hand I didn't actually play at my best in the mixed doubles. So I will work on that the coming period.

Where do you train - and how many times a week?

I train with the Dutch team at Olympic Sport Centre Papendal in Arnhem. Per day we train 3 or 4 hours.

We are coming closer to the London Olympics. Is it a realistic goal for you?

No, the 2012 Olympic Games aren't a realistic goal for me. I just entered the senior tournaments, so my aim is the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro!

What are your next tournaments?

My next tournament will be the Dutch International on home ground. Then followed by the European Championships in Sweden. I am really looking forward to these both tournaments.

Last question: What is your best stroke?

I wouldn't say I have one particular stroke that is a lot better than another. I think my shot variation makes most of my strokes dangerous. Or at least I like to think so (laughs).

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via Badminton Europe

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