Elated Sindhu looking forward to Indian Badminton League

New Delhi: Delighted to win a bronze at the just-concluded World Championships and also being recommended for Arjuna award, rising shuttler P V Sindhu on Tuesday said she was now looking to put her best foot forward in Indian Badminton League, starting here on Wednesday.

"It was my first World Championships and for me beating two Chinese players in a row was a great thing. I am really very happy to have got the bronze medal. And now that I have also come to know that my name has been recommended for the Arjuna award, I am elated," said Sindhu.

"I am doing well at the moment and am looking forward to giving my best in the IBL. This format is very exciting and different. I think it is going to be a good show and everyone will enjoy the tournament," she added.

Sindhu will be leading Awadhe Warriors in the competition.

Asked if she was under pressure while playing in the semifinals against Ratchanok Intanon during the World Championships, Sindhu said, "I didn`t have any pressure as such but I became a bit negative, even as my opponent played very well."

Olympic bronze medallist Saina Nehwal said IBL`s format seemed interesting.

"Indian players have been doing very well. Recent performances have been good, and that`s the reason why we are having a tournament like IBL here. It is great that the top players of the world are here. We would get to interact with them and learn a lot.

"The format also looks very interesting. The fact that the third and deciding game would be an 11-point affair, it is interesting. Although there would be a lot of tension but for fans it is going to be fun," explained Saina, who is the icon player of the Hyderabad Hotshots.

"Team expectation will also be a lot. I have always played well in team tournaments. This will be fun as there is nothing to lose and only to gain," she said.

Speaking about the growth of badminton in the country, Saina said, "If we continue to perform like the way we are at the moment, it won`t be long before we can get 4, 5 or 6 medals in the Olympics.

"India has a lot of talent and we just have one academy showing consistent results. If we have more academies then we will produce more Sainas, or probably better shuttlers than me."

Doubles special Jwala Gutta of Delhi Smashers said the league will help badminton become more popular as the fans will get to know the top foreign players also.

"In India, badminton is all about the local players like Saina and others, but this League will let the fans an opportunity to know the top foreign players as well."

Icon player of Pune Pistons, Ashwini Ponnappa also agreed with Jwala, saying, "IBL will be really exciting as people will get to watch both the Indian as well as the foreign players under one roof."


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