The inaugural Indian Badminton League (IBL) has shown an amazing knack to court controversy one after another, but it hit the high point on Wednesday after doubles star, Jwala Gutta, tore into compatriot Saina Nehwal for her seemingly dismissive comments on Indonesian great, Taufik Hidayat.
Saina seemed to have pushed the boundaries of team ethics when she publicly slammed Hidayat for criticising the player auction for the measly sum he – a former Olympic and world champion – got while lesser rated players walked away with much bigger sums.
Saina bluntly pointed out to her Hyderabad Hotshots teammate that he was retired and the $15,000 base price for which Hidayat was bought was a fair deal. Jwala, who was herself left fuming after her base price was slashed by the organisers last month, rebuked Saina in a series of tweets. “Taufik hidayat is one of the greatest player… and I don’t think u can dismiss his views just because he has “retired” from the game!!!,” she said, asking whether Saina would have made such comments if it had been an Indian great like Sachin Tendulkar.
In a direct attack on Saina, she said: “No matter how big u have become in sport I think one should try and ustand what ur fellow players views r And work on it!!!
“Nobody can take away his achievements….just because he’s RETIRED!!! He is and always will be one of the greatest badminton player!!!” And again it’s not about money….it’s about RESPECT!!!!!