Hyderabad fans may not get to witness P.V. Sindhu, Saina Nehwal and Kidambi Srikanth — three of India’s top badminton stars in action this year.
The teams featuring the trio ( Sindhu in Chennai Smashers; Saina and Srikanth in Awadhe Warriors) have failed to make it to the semifinals of the third edition of the Premier Badminton League, which will be held in Hyderabad.
Hyderabad Hunters and Bengaluru Blasters will play the last league match in Hyderabad on Sunday. But with the two teams already in the top four of the table, the match will have little consequence in terms of deciding the semifinalists, but the scoreline will determine which team will get to compete against which team in the semifinal. Ahmedabad Smash Masters and Delhi Dashers are the other two teams in the top four, currently placed first and third respectively.
Here’s how things stand after Wednesday’s match between Delhi Dashers and North Eastern Warriors.
Awadhe Warriors (5th) North Eastern Warriors (6th), Chennai Smashers (7th), Mumbai Rockets (8th) are the four teams that failed to make the cut.
H.S. Prannoy, playing for Ahmedabad Smash Masters and B. Sai Praneeth ( Hyderabad Hunters) will be the prominent Indian names remaining in the competition. But the semifinals will not have a dearth of star power. Men’s World No. 1 Viktor Axelsen ( Bengaluru Blasters) and Tai Tzu Ying (Ahmedabad), the top ranked woman in the world, are still in the scheme of things, so is Olympic champion and home crowd favourite Carolina Marin (Hyderabad Hunters).
Badminton fans in Hyderabad may still get their money’s worth of action. They still have their home team to cheer for.