Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth has become the world's top-ranked male badminton player. On Thursday, Srikanth rose to the top of the World Badminton Federation (WBF) ranking. He is now the second Indian and the first Indian male to be ranked No 1 in the world.
Srikanth, 25, rose past Denmark's Viktor Axelson to the top spot on the weekly ranking. Srikanth's 76,895 points took him past the 75,470 points that Axelson has scored. Axelson is presently injured and not playing, leading him to lose out on 1660 points that he would have got for defending his Malaysian Open title from last year.
Srikanth's No 1 ranking also comes just days after he played a key role in winning the gold for India in the mixed-team event at the ongoing Commonwealth Games in Australia. He is still in the running in the men's singles format at the Gold Coast CWG 2018.
Srikanth captured the No 2 spot in the WBF ranking in November 2017, and he had suffered injuries that kept him from taking the top spot. The climb to the No 2 spot came on the back of a very successful year for Srikanth, having won four Super Series titles before his injuries forced him to sit tournaments out. This is the highest number of Super Series wins in a year for an India.
Srikanth has been playing pro since 2008, and rose to attention with his 2013 Thailand Open win. His first Super Series title came the next year at the China Open.