Olympic bronze medallist Saina Nehwal, quarterfinalist Parupalli Kashyap, women’s doubles partners till the Games, Jwala Gutta and Ashwini Ponnappa and second best ranked Indian woman shuttler PV Sindhu are five of the six icon players for the inaugural Indian Badminton League to be held across six cities from June 24 to July 11, 2013. The sixth icon player is yet to be identified.
The six cities that will, in all likelihood, host the $1million league in the first year are Mumbai, Lucknow, Pune, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Chennai. Two other cities, Nagpur and Delhi, are also in the short list but a final decision will be taken soon. The cities have been shortlisted based on the facilities they offer for badminton.
Launching the IBL here on Saturday were the five icon players besides the Indian team bound for next week’s China Open. National coach P Gopichand and former international U Vimal Kumar were also present.
Said Saina: “Badminton is growing in India and is getting a lot of interest. Hope it becomes very successful.”