The Premier Badminton League serves as one of the biggest stages for a player to prove his/her mettle in the game of badminton. The fifth season of the PBL saw the sporting fraternity unleash several domestic talents and young shuttlers at an early age.
In the past seasons so far, the league has seen many young players make a name for themselves like Chirag Shetty, Satwik Sairaj and many more. Notably, in this season, there are a few youngsters who have outperformed, ensuring that the future of the country rests on safe hands.
While the fifth season of the PBL has concluded successfully on February 9, we take a look at a few of the young talents who have shown glimpses of their brilliance this season.
#1 Gayatri Gopichand– Chennai Superstarz
The Premier Badminton League has successfully slated off giving the Indian shuttlers an opportunity to compete with the global counterparts. This season saw the sporting fraternity unleash several domestic talents and young shuttlers at an early age. The PBL gives an opportunity for these young minds to play with experienced players which aid in
Daughter of the former Badminton player, Pullela Gopichand, Gayatri was roped in by the Chennai Superstarz this season. Though she did not win any of her 4 matches, the youngster won the hearts of the country when she played against the former World no. 1, Tai Tzu Ying. She played with an elevated level of maturity and snatched the first game on her side 15-13. However, Ying got the better of her in the remaining two sets to win the match.
She also got the opportunity to play with the World Champion, PV Sindhu where she covered the court smoothly, but lost to the more experienced Sindhu.
While the country was pondering regarding the future of women singles, after Saina Nehwal and PV Sindhu, this 18-year-old has given hope for women’s badminton and is expected to put India on the Global Badminton map.
#2 Lakshya Sen- Chennai Superstarz
2019 was not a glorious year on the BWF circuit for the men’s singles but Lakshya Sen had been saving grace by winning 5 International tournaments for the country, in the same year.
The youngster was roped in by Chennai Superstarz this season, for whom he won four out of the five matches that he played earning two trump matches for the franchise. Currently ranked World no. 41, Sen defeated the world no. 33, B. Leverdez and the Korean, Lee Keun in straight sets. With such strong performances, the 18-year-old has made his team proud and is expected to show his capability in the International circuit this year.
#3 Rituparna Das- Pune 7 Aces
The 23-year-old had been roped in by the Pune 7 Aces this season. Though she won 2 out of the 7 matches that she played, she gained all praise for destroying the trump of the World no. 14, Beiwen Zhang. She completely overpowered Zhang and defeated her in two straight sets 15-13,15-12.
Currently ranked World no.100., Das bears the onus of women singles of the country after Saina and Sindhu, and with her PBL season so far, she looks confident for the 2020 BWF circuit.
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