Chetak Khedikar named Indian junior badminton team coach for International School Sports Foundation Games

Chetak Khedikar has been appointed as the coach of the Indian junior badminton team for the upcoming International School Federation (ISF) 19th Games.

Veteran Nagpur coach Chetak Khedikar will be one of the two coaches of the eight-man India U18 badminton team at the prestigious tournament. The mega event will take place from May 14th to 22nd, 2022 in Normandy, France.

The School Games Federation of India (SGFI) announced Khedikar’s name for the upcoming sporting spectacle on Friday. Around 3,500 athletes from 70 countries are expected to compete in the 20 sports at these games.

The ISF Gymnasiade is the largest international multisport and educational event for students aged 16-18. This major event was first organized in 1974 and will celebrate its 19th edition in France later this month.

For the Badminton World Federation (BWF) certified trainer Khedikar it will be his first assignment abroad. Khedikar’s trainee Nikkita Joseph is part of the four-man India U-18 girls team for the upcoming event.

The 40-year-old was instrumental in designing several shuttles in the region, including Rohan Gurbani, who played at the 2019 World Junior Championships.

He has mentored Nikkita Joseph, an SGFI Gold Medalist, since she was a child. Nikkita placed fourth in the U17 girls category in India.

Khedkar has also produced national players like Sameet Dandwate; Aditi Pandit; CBSE’s first national singles champion, Mrunmayi Saoji; Sudhanshu Bhure and Pranali Sapkal.

India U-18 girls player Nikkita Joseph (L) with her coach Chetak Khedikar.  (Image credit: Chetak Khedikar)
India U-18 girls player Nikkita Joseph (L) with her coach Chetak Khedikar. (Image credit: Chetak Khedikar)

Chetak Khedikar took part in the renowned BWF coaching conference in Dubai in 2016

Chetak Khedikar is a qualified BWF Level 1 Certified Coach and attended the prestigious BWF Coaches Conference in Dubai during the Dubai World Series Finals in December 2016.

Khedikar has also passed the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Coaches’ Education Program (CEP) exam in Badminton and Sports Science.

He also attended various trainer clinics and workshops led by international trainers Pullela Gopichand, Augus Dwi Santoso, Namrih Suroto and Aaron Lee from Malaysia.

The former shuttle had won a bronze medal representing Nagpur University’s West Zone badminton team. He had also qualified for the 2006-07 All India Inter-University Tournament.

He also competed in the 8th Maharashtra State Inter-University Sports Meet Ashwamedh Games in 2004.

Khedikar, who is a physical education teacher at Center Point School, Dabha Branch, Nagpur, was the 2003 Maharashtra State Coach at the 49th National School Games.

He was also an assistant coach for the state’s junior and senior teams at the West Zone Inter-State Badminton Championship in Vadodara and at the Senior National Badminton Championship in Nagpur.

The Nagpur-based coach runs his badminton academy at Annasaheb Gundewar College and Shuttlers Craze Sports Academy (SCSA) at the Divisional Sports Complex in the Mankapur district of his hometown. He described his appointment as a great honor and hopes to do a good job for the country.

“It is a very good opportunity for me to coach the Indian team during the 19th International School Federation World School Championships. I am very happy and look forward to this new task. It will be a new experience for me and I want to make the most of it.”

He said that the camp of the Indian team will be held in Noida before the national team’s departure for France. During the short fitness camp, Indian players can train together. This will help the coach to try different team combinations.

Khedikar thanked his team’s sponsors and organizers before attending the games.

“I thank the School Games Federation of India, Employer Center Point Group of Schools Management, MBA, NDBA and Federal Bank for supporting my players and SCSA coaches.”

Khedikar assured that the visa process has been completed for all 10 members of the Indian squad and everyone is looking forward to the mega event.

Edited by Akshay Saraswat

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