World champion PV Sindhu pulls out of Uber Cup in Denmark

Sindhu will, however, send her entry for the two Tour events, also in Denmark
PV Sindhu of India in action(Mohd Zakir/HT PHOTO)
PV Sindhu of India in action(Mohd Zakir/HT PHOTO)
Updated on Sep 02, 2020 08:01 PM IST
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Hindustan Times, New Delhi | ByAvishek Roy

World Champion PV Sindhu has decided to skip the Thomas and Uber Cup, in Aarhus, Denmark starting from Oct 3-11. The prestigious Thomas and Uber Cup Finals is supposed to restart international badminton after a gap of six months.

Sindhu, however, will send her entry for the two Badminton World Federation (BWF) Super 750 Tour events in Odense, Denmark, scheduled after the Thomas/Uber Cup competition in successive weeks.

“She will skip the Uber Cup because of personal reasons. As of now, she will send her entry for the next two tournaments, and later decide on participation,” said her father Ramana.

It has put a question mark over India’s participation in the competition. The women’s team has heavily relied on Sindhu and Saina Nehwal in recent years and won bronze medals in 2014 and 2016. Sixteen teams each in men’s and women’s competition are scheduled to participate in the championships, leading to large contingents gathering for the tournament. BWF has issued stringent safety protocols for the competition. However, Chinese Taipei pulled out of the competition on Tuesday.

The Badminton Federation of India will find it difficult to string together a team of 10 players each for men’s and women’s teams, with most of them yet to begin training. India’s women’s team are clubbed with China, France and Germany in the Uber Cup draw. Sindhu has been training at the Gopichand Academy since August 7. She along with Kidambi Srikanth, Sai Praneeth and Sikki Reddy, are the only four players in the national camp at the Gopichand academy.

With world No. 7 Sindhu pulling out, Saina, who has been training separately, is the only top rung player (world no 20) left in women’s singles. The next best Indian player in singles world ranking is Ashmita Chaliha as world no. 77. Each tie will consist of three singles and two doubles matches. The doubles too remain a tricky area. India’s best combination of Sikki Reddy and Ashwini Ponnappa (world No 28) are still not training together. In the men’s side too, the doubles combination of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty have not been training together.

“The players had earlier given their consent and that is why the team’s participation was confirmed. It is the first tournament that will restart international badminton and it makes sense for the players to compete. We still have some time in hand to announce the final squad,” said one of the national selectors on condition of anonymity.

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