2017 is Srikanth’s year: B Sai Praneeth
Kidambi Srikanth (Image credit- News18)
New Delhi: Ace Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth reaped the rewards for his efforts, reaching the world no. 2 position in the BWF rankings for the first time in his career. From having to withdraw from last year’s French Open, to winning it this year, it has been a remarkable turnaround for the 24-year-old from Guntur and no one could have summed it better than his teammate, B Sai Praneeth.
“There is no doubt in my mind that 2017 is year of Srikanth’s with four Super Series triumphs. What he has achieved is phenomenal. Winning back-to-back Super Series titles twice in a year is something exceptional,” said Praneeth as quoted by the Times of India.
An impressive 2017, which saw him win four titles in a single year has propelled him to the second position with 73, 403 rating points, just 4527 points behind the top ranked Viktor Axelsen of Denmark.
“He is now world No. 2 and it’s a matter of time when he becomes the world No. 1. He won the Indonesia Open and Australian Open within a span of few days. He repeated the spectacular feat again by capturing the Denmark Open and French Open in successive weeks. He seems to be hungry for more,” added Praneeth who defeated Srikanth in the final of the Singapore Open, earlier this year.
It has been a stellar year for the boy from Guntur who became the first Indian to win four Super Series titles in a single year that includes the Indonesia Open, Australian Open, Denmark Open and the French Open. He has consistently maintained a high level of composure even in crunch situations, snatching victories from the jaws of defeat. One such example was the semi-final win over countryman HS Prannoy in the French Open, where Srikanth came back not once but twice from almost losing the game, to emerging victorious. The second position in the BWF rankings is a result of the determination and grit shown by the Gopichand Academy lad as he aims to reach the top position and create history.
Meanwhile, HS Prannoy at 11th position is India’s next best shuttler followed by B. Sai Praneeth, Sameer Verma and Ajay Jayaram at 16th, 18th and the 22nd position. Parupalli Kashyap also received a boost of two points to be ranked 45th.
PV Sindhu who just like Srikanth has had a incredible year, bagging a silver medal in the World Championships while also winning the India and the Korea Open, remained at the second position. The Rio Olympics silver medalist accumulated a total of 82, 486 and is just next to the top ranked Tai Tzu Ying.
Among the other women shuttlers, World Championships bronze medalist Saina Nehwal remained at the 11th position, while Rituparna Das is the next best ranked Indian at the 50th position.
In the doubles category, the pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty at rank 28 are the best Indian doubles pair, while the pair of Ashwini Ponnappa and Reddy N. Sikki, ranked 25th are the top ranked Indian women’s doubles pair in the BWF rankings.