The All India senior ranking badminton tournament began amid much fanfare on Tuesday at the sports complex of Sikkim Manipal Institute of Technology (SMIT), Majhitar.
The tournament is being organized by the Badminton Association of Sikkim (BAS), under the aegis of the Badminton Association of India (BAI) and sponsored by state Sports and Youth Affairs department, government of Sikkim.
This ranking tournament is very important for national players as it helps them to get shortlisted for international tournaments” ,informed BAS president C Zangpo.
According to BAS, top 10 Indian international players like PratulJoshi, Ansal Yadav, Bodhit Joshi, Anura Prabhu Desai, Rasika Raje,Riya Mukerjee, Shika Gautam, Vignesh Deswalkar, Anil Kr Raju and Venkat Gaurava Prasad are taking part in this ranking tournament.
The tournament will be in five categories; men’s single, men’s double, women’s single, women’s double and mixed double and a player can also take part in maximum of three categories.
The organizers have informed that the cash prize of Rs five lakh will be given to the players in proportion as per the norms.
Qualifying rounds of the tournament were held on December 4 and 5 and the main tournament began from Wednesday.
With a participation of 425 players (195 main draw players and 301 qualifying draw players) from 27 states and sports boards of the country, the tournament features seven players from Sikkim.
This is one of the tournaments to select the players for the Indian team to participate in international events. The players will be selected on the basis of their performance and rank.
This is for the first time that Sikkim is hosting a tournament of this magnitude with able support from the state government.
Notably, Sikkim was one of the wild card entries with the bidding was in process.
The closing ceremony will be held on December 9 which will be graced by Chief Minister Pawan Chamling as the chief guest.
This is one of the six ranking tournaments organized by BAI in one year.