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  5. World Badminton Championships 2023: Five Indian players to watch out for

World Badminton Championships 2023: Five Indian players to watch out for

Here are the five Indians to watch out for at the World Badminton Championships 2023 in Copenhagen, Denmark.

Written By: India TV Sports Desk New Delhi Updated on: August 16, 2023 14:14 IST
PV Sindhu
Image Source : GETTY IMAGES PV Sindhu

The badminton fever is set to grip the entire world as the forthcoming edition of the World Badminton Championships is about to kickstart on August 21 at Copenhagen in Denmark. The tournament is considered arguably the most prestigious one in the sport. 

Its inaugural edition was played in 1977 and back in the day, it was organised once every two years until 2003, after which the event was conducted every year (except the year of the Summer Olympics). The previous edition of the tournament was played in 2022 in Tokyo, Japan. 

Just like every year, Indian badminton fans will be glued to their TV sets and mobile phones in anticipation of India bagging a medal in any of the categories. Although India will be competing across the five categories i.e. Men's singles, Women's singles, Men's doubles, Women's doubles and in the Mixed doubles event, the badminton fans will primarily have their hopes pinned on a selected few who have either already won a medal or two at the event or are highly likely to grab one based on their recent form.

Here are the five Indian players/pairs to watch out for at the World Badminton Championships 2023 in Denmark:

PV Sindhu

The 28-year-old is one of the prime contenders for a medal in the women's singles category. Having already won gold at the event in 2019, Sindhu will look to repeat the same in the forthcoming edition. Sindhu has won five medals at the marquee event. She first won a bronze in 2013 after losing to eventual winner Ratchanok Intanon in the semi-finals.

She followed it up with yet another bronze in the 2014 edition. Desperate to change the colour of her medal, Sindhu showed immense grit in the year 2017 and was inches away from scripting history before she came down fighting against Japan's Nozomi Okuhara in the summit clash and had to settle for silver. Despite the heartbreak in 2017, the Hyderabad-born picked up momentum in 2018 from where she left in the previous edition and managed to make it to the finals yet again only to face yet another unpleasant outcome this time at the hands of Spain's Carolina Marin.

Sindhu's resilience finally bore fruit in the following year at Basel in Switzerland as she took sweet revenge for her loss in the 2017 edition and won the match comprehensively.

Though her recent form has been a matter of concern, she will rely on her maturity as a player and would look to take inspiration from her previous success that she has had in the tournament to go all the way yet again this time around.

Lakshya Sen

Tipped by many former badminton players and the experts of the game as the next big thing in Indian badminton, Lakshya Sen will be one of the big medal hopes for India at the global event this year. In the 2021 edition of the tournament, Lakshya displayed some red-hot form on his way into the semi-finals but lost to compatriot Kidambi Srikanth in a thrilling encounter 21-17 14-21 17-21. 

While he had his sight set on the gold but had to settle for a bronze. However, he has improved his game to a major extent since that edition and his recent success that has come in the form of gold at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022 and a silver at the All England Open in 2022.

Kidambi Srikanth

India's ace shuttler and former world No. 1 Kidambi Srikanth will be eager to change the colour of his medal in the forthcoming edition in Denmark. Srikanth was just a match away from becoming the first Indian men's badminton player to win a gold at the global event while playing in the 2021 edition but was outplayed by Singapore's Loh Kean Yew in the finale.

Though a silver at the World Badminton Championships is no minor feat as not many have managed to achieve the same in their playing career, to stand at the top of the podium with a gold medal hanging around your neck is something that Srikanth would love to experience in 2023.

HS Prannoy

With the kind of breathtaking performances that, India's HS Prannoy has delivered during his playing career, it's strange to read that the 31-year-old hasn't made his presence felt at the World Badminton Championships in all these years. 

Prannoy's agility and the sheer pace at which he thumps his smashes are a sight to behold and if the Delhi-born manages to keep up the form that he recently displayed at the Australia Open (a Super 500 event), he can surely earn a medal for India at the pinnacle event. He played some remarkable badminton at the Australia Open but couldn't cross the final hurdle and lost to China's Weng Hong Yang 21-9, 21-23, 22-20.

Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty

The resurgent Indian pair is reaping the rewards of the hard work that it has done lately. Having already won the Swiss Open (Super 300), Indonesia Open (Super 1000) and the Korea Open ( Super 500) this season, the Indian pair will look to stake a claim at gold this season. 

Having already won bronze at Tokyo in the previous edition, after losing to 20-22, 21-18, 21-16 Malaysia's Aaron Chia and Soh Wooi Yik, this might turn out to be the breakthrough season for Satwiksairaj and Chirag. The medal favourites in their category will be the No. 1 seed Fajar Alfian and Muhammad Rian Ardianto of Indonesia.

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