The Indian badminton had an overall Fantastic year in 2014. Saina Nehwal won three titles namely the China Masters, Australian Open and Indian Open. She also reached the semi-finals of Dubai Super finals. She was a part of the squad who won the Bronze medal in the Uber Cup and also in the Asian games 2014.
P Kashyap won the gold medal in the men’s singles event at the Commonwealth games 2014 at Glasgow after 32 years. PV Sindhu won 2nd successive bronze medal at the World badminton championship and the retained the Macau Open. K. Srikanth won the China Masters title beating Lin Dan in the finals of China Masters open, reached the semi-finals of Hong Kong Open and Dubai Super finals. K Srikanth rose to number 4 in the rankings which show the power of Indian badminton.
Other notable performances were by HS Prannoy, Ajay Jayaram. India was never in the contention of any doubles’ matches. Overall India’s performances in 2014 were exceptional.
In 2015, the main challenge for Indian badminton players is be consistent and prepare for long drawn matches. Pullelia Gopichand has been responsible for the performance of the shutter’s because of the hard work he has done with these players. Vimal Kumar also helped in last few months Saina Nehwal. I am sure in 2015, the players will do their best and improve their performance of 2014 which proved to be stepping stone for Indian badminton coupled with working on their stamina.
The performances of Indian badminton players in singles were great to see. Indian Badminton players must work harder and maintain their stamina, fitness and agility. Indian fans are hoping that the Badminton players both in Women’s and Men’s section do the country proud and bring more laurels to the country.
It is time for the pair of Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa in Women’s Doubles and Akshay Diwalkar and Pranav Chopra in Men’s doubles to prepare and give a fight for their reputation and that of the country. It may even be worth Ashwini pairing up with some other youngster Gadre or Sindhu.
The Badminton Association of India need to work on all three varieties of double-combination (Men, women and mixed doubles) teams and raise some interest in playing them starting from domestic circuit so that competitive pairs can be fielded in international events.
Saina Nehwal and K Shrikant, who rose to number 4 in the BWF rankings last year, should continue the same and try to improve further in 2015.