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2018 Commonwealth Games: From Sindhu to Srikanth, a look at India's strong badminton contingent

India Has Sent A 221-member Strong Contingent To The Games And Is Hopeful Of Bagging Medals In Boxing, Wrestling, Badminton And Shooting.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Gautam Lalotra | Updated on: 04 Apr 2018, 07:01:30 PM
2018 Commonwealth Games

New Delhi:

The 2018 Commonwealth Games got underway with a stellar opening ceremony at the Carrara stadium in Gold Coast, Australia.

India has sent a 221-member strong contingent to the games and is hopeful of bagging medals in boxing, wrestling, badminton and shooting.

The country is hopeful of a top three finish at Gold Coast after finishing a disappointing fifth in the last edition at Glasgow, Scotland.

India has always been a formidable force in Badminton in the Commonwealth Games and this time around it is no different. India will be represented by a strong pool of shuttlers, many of which are potential medal winners. India has sent a total of 10 shuttlers, five males and five females to the Gold Coast Games.

The Indian challenge in badminton will be spearheaded by Kidambi Srikanth and PV Sindhu in the men's and women's section respectively.
Let us take a look at the Indian badminton contingent which looks like a force to reckon with - 

1. PV Sindhu 

The reigning queen of Indian badminton PV Sindhu is moving into the games at the back of a superb season. She was the silver medalist at both the 2016 Rio Olympics and 2017 World Championships at Glasgow. 

Sindhu tasted a lot of success at the BWF tour last year wrapping up the India Open and Korea Open Super Series titles. In the absence of her arch-rivals Carolina Marin, Akane Yamaguchi and Nozomi Okuhara, Sindhu has a bright chance of winning gold for India.

2. Saina Nehwal

Saina Nehwal may not have been at the peaks of her prowess but is still a major medal hope for India. Nehwal had a couple of good results, reaching the quarters of the All England Badminton Championship and winning a bronze at the 2017 World Championships at Glasgow. 

Saina would draw great consolation from her impressive record at the CWG Games. She has won medals for India thrice, winning gold in the women's singles in 2010 and bagging a silver and bronze in the mixed team events. The poster girl of Indian badminton would have to step up her game to bring back a medal for India.

3. Kidambi Srikanth

Kidambi Srikanth is India's top male shuttler at the 2018 Commonwealth Games. The tall and lanky shuttler from Andhra Pradesh was in superlative form, winning four Super Series titles in 2017. 

The Gopichand protege has won India medals at major international events so he knows what it takes to win laurels for the nation at multi-sport event.In the absence of his arch rivals Lin Dan, Son Wan Ho, Viktor Axelsen, Srikanth's main competitor for the title is Malaysian legend Lee Chong Wei.

Besides having a strong team in singles, the Indians have a decent women's doubles pair in Ashwini Ponappa and Sikki Reddy who have the mantle to go all the way and win the title.

India has been a strong badminton nation at the Commonwealth Games. The South Asian powerhouse's main challenge comes in the form of Malaysia, England and Singapore to an extent.

With past greats like Prakash Padukone, Syed Modi, Parupalli Kashyap winning the yellow medal in the past, the current crop can draw inspiration and strive hard to bring back laurels for the country.

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First Published : 04 Apr 2018, 06:26:17 PM