Star Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth on Thursday was rewarded for his remarkably consistent form as Badminton World Federation (BWF) ranked him the world number 1 badminton player in their latest rankings. Srikanth usurped Viktor Axelsen of Denmark from the summit of the BWF rankings with 76,895 points in men’s singles category. The Indian shuttler has undoubtedly benefitted from a good run of games at Commonwealth Games while the Danish badminton player lost more than 1,500 points after failing to successfully defend Malaysian Open title.
Kidambi Srikanth had become only the second Indian after Saina Nehwal to top the badminton world rankings. He witnessed a stellar 2017 calendar year but missed the opportunity to go on the top of the rankings due to injury problems. He won Super Series titles in Indonesia, Australia, Denmark and France in a show of true dominance in the sport.
Speaking on his achievement, coach Pullela Gopichand told reporters in Australia, “This is a huge achievement for Srikanth as well as for Indian badminton. There has been a lot of talk about our women doing well, but now we will have a men’s No.1. This will help Srikanth become more relaxed. Whatever happens from here, he will always know that he was ranked as the best in the world – that he has accomplished that goal. It will help him focus more on winning tournaments.”
The 25-year-old badminton player is in superb form this year as well and has been playing a crucial role in India’s purple patch at the ongoing Commonwealth Games 2018. In men’s singles round of 16, Kidambi beat Sri Lanka’s Niluka Karunaratne 21-10, 21-10 in straight sets to book a spot in the quarterfinals. He is heavily touted to clinch a top medal for India at the mega sporting event.