The Badminton Association of India (BAI) has decided to send doubles player JBS Vidyadhar to Doha. The Hyderabadi’s name is not there in the list cleared by the Sports Ministry.
Speaking to HT, BAI secretary LC Gupta said the association would foot his airfare instead. “We have decided to pay for his (Vidyadhar’s) airfare,” he said, adding that the Indian Olympic Association (IOA) would take care of his boarding and lodging.
In fact, he indicated that the BAI may do the same for Trupti Murgunde also. “We have asked Trupti to get all her documents ready,” said a BAI official who preferred to remain anonymous.
“If he (Vidyadhar) does not go, then the other doubles player (V Diju) will have to sit idle. The entire exercise of sending a doubles team would be defeated,” said Gupta.
When contacted, Vidyadhar said he was relieved. “I am relieved. I cannot describe the tension I’ve experienced in the last few days,” he said.
Meanwhile, the participants for the team events are scheduled to leave from Mumbai on Monday night, since the events get underway from Friday.
“It was decided to send them early to give enough time to acclimatise,” Gupta said.
“We have had a good workout at the camp for the last three weeks, Hopefully, we will perform to the best of our abilities,” said national coach P Gopi Chand.
Gopi Chand refused to read too much into India’s tough grouping. “We have a tough group (including China) but we will put up a decent show,” he said.