The Premier Badminton League (PBL) begins on Sunday with a clash between Hyderabad Hunters and Chennai Smashers in a clash that includes a sub-plot -- a tussle between Olympic women’s singles finalists Carolina Marin and P.V. Sindhu.
Carolina had triumphed over Sindhu in the Rio Games final and come Sunday, they will renew the rivalry on the first day of 2017. But what will be interesting to see is whether Hyderbad’s crowd support Chennai’s Sindhu against two-time reigning world champion Carolina, who will be spearheading Hyderbad’s challenge.
Apart from Sindhu, Chennai boast men’s singles shuttlers Tommy Sugiarto and Parupalli Kashyap, who will be eager to continue his progress after making a comeback from a knee injury. Britain’s Adcock couple, Chris and Gabrielle will be important in the men’s and the mixed doubles matches.
In the opposite camp will be two talented Indian singles youngsters Sameer Verma and B. Sai Praneeth. In the form of English Rajiv Ouseph, Hyderabad have a proven international player. Malaysian doubles specialist Tan Boon Heong and Tan Wee Kiong.
Here’s the full schedule of Premier Badminton League (PBL) 2017:
January 1: Hyderabad Hunters vs Chennai Smashers, Bengaluru Blasters vs Delhi Acers
January 2: Awadhe Warriors vs Hyderabad Hunters
January 3: Bengaluru Blasters vs Chennai Smashers, Delhi Acers vs Mumbai Rockets
January 4: Hyderabad Hunters vs Mumbai Rockets
January 5: Awadhe Warriors vs Delhi Acers
January 6: Awadhe Warriors vs Mumbai Rockets
January 7: Bengaluru Blasters vs Hyderabad Hunters
January 8: Delhi Acers vs Chennai Smashers
January 9: Awadhe Warriors vs Bengaluru Blasters
January 10: Mumbai Rockets vs Chennai Smashers
January 11: Awadhe Warriors vs Chennai Smashers
January 12: Delhi Acers vs Hyderabad Hunters
January 13: Semi-final 1, Semi-final 2
January 14: FINAL