Praneeth, Prannoy favourites for title

Dev S Sukumar. Bangalore
Indian junior badminton players Sai Praneeth and HS Prannoy go in to the Youth Olympics with a distinct shot at a gold medal. Without principal contender Viktor Axelsen of Denmark, the World Junior Champion, it’s a fair bet that either Praneeth or Prannoy can go all the way to the title. Both had won bronze medals in the singles of the World Juniors, with Praneeth falling to Axelsen in the semifinals. The inaugural edition of the Youth Olympics begin in Singapore on August 14.
“We can make the top-four,” said Prannoy. “One of the Chinese players has withdrawn. It’s going to be difficult, of course. We have trained well and are confident.”
Praneeth is a favourite for the gold medal, for he had an excellent World Junior Championships. He was inspirational in the team event, playing the doubles and singles, and even getting the better of Axelsen in the match against Denmark.
National coach Pullela Gopichand was confident of a good show from his boys. “Both played well at the World Juniors, so they can do well at the Youth Olympics as well. We don’t know much about this event. In other sports the rules are a bit different, but in badminton it’s the same.” The draws will be out on Friday. India is sending a 47-member contingent to the Games, including 15 officials.

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About badmintonmania

Sometimes I wonder if I'm the Indian in Thoreau's Walden who makes cane baskets and is surprised nobody wants them. A. was talking about discipline when she said: "But Dev, if you want to move ahead in life, you'll have to be like that," and she may as well have defined everything else for me. I've played the low percentage game for too long to believe there's anything in it but the romance; the odds keep getting jacked up higher and higher; and you may be a good Idealist but a worse Fool.
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