Indian badminton ace Kidambi Srikanth beat Pablo Abian Of Spain to begin his BWF World Championships campaign on a winning note; Kidambi Srikanth wins the first round match. On Sunday, the 12th seeded Indian beat the local challenger 21-12, 21-16 in 36 minutes in the first round of the men’s singles event at Huelva, Spain.
Shrikanth was born on February 7, 1993, who trains at the Gopichand Badminton Academy, Hyderabad. He ranked as world number 1 at the BWF ranking in April 2018. Kidambi was awarded Padma Shri, India’s fourth-highest civilian award from Ram Nath Kovind in 2018, and Arjuna award in 2015.
The BWF World Tour is a series of elite badminton tournaments sanctioned by the Badminton World Federation. He became the first runner-up. He received Rs 500,000 as an award from BAI for the 2015 Swiss Open Grand Prix Gold victory. He defeated Viktor Axelsen in the final 21-15, 12-21, 21-14. For the 2015 India Super Series victory, he beat Victor Axelsen and received rupees Five lakh as an award from BAI. For the 2017 Indonesia Super Series Premier, he defeated Kazumasa Sakai in the final. For the Australian Super Series, he defeated Chen Long in the final. He received silver for Men’s singles Commonwealth Games and gold in South Asian Games.
Srikanth Nammalwar Kidambi was born in Ravulapalem, Andhra Pradesh, to a Telugu family. His father, KVS Krishna, is a landlord, and his mother Radha is a homemaker. Srikanth’s older brother K. Nandagopal is also a badminton player. In 2012, Kidambi overcame the then Junior World Champion Zulfadli Zulkiffli of Malaysia in the Maldives International Challenge to claim the men’s singles title.
In 2013 the Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold event, Kidambi won the men’s singles title, beating then world number eight and local favorite Boonsak Ponsana in straight sets. In the same year, Kidambi beat the reigning champion and Olympian Parupalli Kashyap in the All India Senior National Championships in Delhi to claim his first senior national title. He was also part of the Awadhe Warriors team that finished second in the Indian Badminton League, 2013. He was a quarter-finalist in the 2014 Malaysian Open.
He was part of the Indian Badminton contingent that reached the semi-finals of the Mixed-team event at the Commonwealth Games 2014 in Glasgow. In 2014 China opened Super Series Premier by beating five times World Champion and two times Olympic Champion Lin Dan in straight sets, thus becoming the first Indian to win a Super Series Premier men’s title. In 2016 Kidambi reached the semi-final in the Malaysia Masters, where he lost to Iskandar Zulkarnain of Malaysia in January. He won the Syed Modi International Badminton Championships Grand Prix Gold Title, defeating Huang Yuxiang in the final. At the 2016 South Asian Games, he won two gold medals in the men’s team and men’s singles, defeating Prannoy Kumar in the singles final. Although his team lost in the semi-final at the 2016 Badminton Asia Team Championship, he remained undefeated.
In 2017, Kidambi and Sai Praneeth created history when they became the first-ever Indian pair to enter the finals of a ranking event in Badminton. Both from Hyderabad and being coached by Pullela Gopichand, Sai Praneeth clinched the Singapore Super Series title. In 2018, Kidambi started at the India Open as the second seed at the Commonwealth Games in Gold Coast; Kidambi won gold in the mixed team event and a silver in the singles event. He achieved world number 1 ranking for a week during this period. Kidambi represented India at the South Asian Games in Nepal and won the gold medal in the team event.
Image Courtesy: Kidambi Srikanth