All the Indian shuttlers have already crashed out in the ongoing Thailand Open but there is some positive news coming up from the colts for the badminton fraternity.
Riding on some fine performances, promising Indian shuttlers Varun Kapur of Pune and Hyderabad’s Samiya Imad Farooqui along with four other Indians have confirmed top-10 spots in the latest Badminton World Federation (BWF’s) world junior Under-19 rankings announced recently.
Starting 2021 on a high, eighteen-year-old Varun moved four places ahead in the men’s rankings while Samiya took a six-spot jump as the youngsters achieved their career-best junior rankings and became world No. 2.
Varun, a trainee of Nikhil Kanetkar Badminton Academy, Pune, had a great run last year as he picked his sixth junior title when he won the XII Portuguese International 2020 in November. While the 17-year-old Hyderabadi, a U-15 Asian Badminton Championship winner, Samiya has been one of the consistent performers at the junior circuit.
“It’s great to see many junior shuttlers doing so well. We currently have 10 Indians in the top-20 and the juniors have shown a lot of promise. This ranking will work as a desired boost for each of them and surely motivate them to work harder as it has been tough year for COVID-19 affected sporting world and badminton is trying to make a comeback after almost a year’s break,” Badminton Association of India (BAI) president Himanta Biswa Sarma said.
Earlier BWF had frozen the world junior rankings as of March 17, 2020, owing to the COVID-19 pandemic. However, with the recommencement of some international junior tournaments, BWF stated that they have decided to add subsequent international junior tournament results to the world junior rankings without deducting points from previous weeks thereby creating a rolling ranking until such time as the world junior rankings can be fully unfrozen.
The BWF rankings released earlier this week, especially in the women’s singles category, saw Indian domination with three more shuttlers—Tasnim Mir (4), Treesa Jolly (8) and Aditi Bhatt (10)—earning themselves a place in the top-10.
In the women’s doubles category, Tressa (8), Tanisha Crasto (9) and Aditi Bhatt (9) are among the Indians who are placed inside top-10.
“BAI executive council meeting and AGM is scheduled for January 30 in Delhi. We will be finalising the detailed plan on how the domestic tournaments as well as the key junior tournaments that BAI plans to send its players this year. We will also be discussing the future plans related to coaching and training for junior shuttlers,” said BAI general secretary Ajay Singhania.
U-19 men’s singles: Varun Kapoor (2)
U-19 women’s singles: Samiya Imad Farooqui (2), Tasnim Mir (4), Treesa Jolly (8), Aditi Bhatt (10).
U-19 women’s doubles: Treesa Jolly (8), Tanisha Crasto (9), Aditi Bhatt (9).