Kidambi Srikanth, the new sensation in Badminton world. After winning two tournaments in a row and reaching a final before that. Srikanth is setting benchmarks for Indian shuttler in the years to come. People have already started calling his rise as the ‘golden years’ of Badminton. He has achieved what no male badminton player has ever achieved, by reaching 3 Super Series finals in a row. Srikanth is determined to reach the ‘New Heights’ just like Virat Kohli who has been the epitome of discipline one needs to have in his life to play the game.
Srikanth, the 24-year-old has dominated and made miraculous comebacks in his recent games. In India, the Badminton World was dominated by female shuttlers— Olympic bronze medallist Saina Nehwal followed by silver medallist PV Sindhu who shot to fame after her near-perfect run in Rio Olympics 2016.
Srikanth was the runner-up in Singapore Open only to lose to another shuttler B Sai Praneeth who hails from Hyderabad as well and coached by Pullela Gopichand. For those who don’t know Gopichand, he coached Sindhu as well and deserves the credit for India’s dominance in Badminton in the recent years.
Srikanth’s fairytale run has put India’s male brigade on World Badminton map. Srikanth is now World’s No.1 shuttler similar to Kohli who is World’s No.1 batsman, but he has not achieved that overnight. Here’s the list of tournaments in which he has reached the finals over the years-
1. China Open 2014 (Winner)
2. India Open (Winner)
3. Singapore Open (Runner-up)
4.Indonesia Open (Winner)
5. Australian Open (Winner)
Kidambi has been playing at international level since he was 18 and since then has got several titles to his name. Apart from Super Series, Kidambhi has been runner-up in three and winner in three out of 6 BWF (Badminton World Federation) tournaments. That clearly shows the consistency of the man, which is the proof that he is not just going through a purple patch, it’s his consistency.
It took some time for him to come into the limelight. Expectations were soaring high when he reached the quarter-finals of Rio Olympics but could not get through in a close encounter. Though he made up for it in 2017 by reaching three finals on the trot. Owing to his terrific performance, India is on No.3 in 2017’s Super Series title in a list dominated by China (No.1) and Japan (No.2).
List of Countries by Number of Superseries Titles won in 2017 pic.twitter.com/IvP3ZhgenL
— Badminton Updates (@badmintonupdate) June 25, 2017
Kidambi has done the badminton players a favour by performing exceedingly well. Before him, a layman only knew PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal. But, with his performance, Kidambi has infused excitement into the Indians as they might shift from cricket and focus on other sports as well.
Kidambi defeated World No.1 shuttler Wan San Ho two times in a week, creating a hype about the tournament’s final showdown. He will surely be one player who will be under the scanner in the future with people expecting him to repeat his heroics every time he sets foot on the badminton court.
Gopichand did not let Sindhu eat ice cream months before the Rio Olympics 2017, Kidambi too followed a strict routine to reach where he is now and that should be an example India’s aspiring athletes should idolise. Kidambi has made every sacrifice Kohli has to reach this level, whether it is in his diet or his practice routines.
The time has come that people realise that Kidambi deserves every bit of credit and appreciation as Kohli or any other player, Sachin Tendulkar for that matter.