Hosting two international BWF challengers in the country, appointing 30 coaches on the payroll and staging a national championship for the U11 category are some of the Badminton Association of India’s key decisions ahead of the 2028 Olympics.
The decisions were taken during the Executive Council meeting shortly after India’s sensational Thomas Cup victory in Bangkok, Thailand on Sunday.
India defeated Indonesia 3-0 in their first summit, securing the historic victory.
“We need to make sure we don’t lose momentum and during our EC meeting it was decided that India will host two international BWF challengers in the country,” BAI Secretary Sanjay Mishra told PTI.
“It has been approved by our (BAI) President and we will be writing BWF soon and hope to get it which will give the players a big boost.”
There are a total of 31 International Challenger Tournaments held in a year, with India 2022 hosting just one of them.
It is the International Challenge of Infosys Foundation India 2022 to be held in Bengaluru from 11th to 16th October.
However, India is hosting three BWF World Tour events – Odisha Super 100, Syed Modi Super 300 and India Open Super 500 tournament in the country.
The goal is to introduce the next generation of players, which in turn will help them manage the skyrocketing costs of playing tournaments at European circuits.
“Around 40-45 players play against these international challengers in Europe and other parts of the world and spend around 2-4 lakhs, not everyone can afford the cost,” Mishra said.
“So having the international challengers in the country will give them exposure and help them earn ranking points so they can compete in bigger events and play against high-profile players.”
“The Paris Olympics are only two years away so we need to target the 2028 Olympics. So all these steps were taken to keep an eye on the future.”
BAI also decided to strengthen its coaching panel by hiring 30 coaches and has also developed an appropriate plan to improve their skills.
“At least 30 trainers will be appointed under the BAI payroll and deployed to various small regional centers. So former players and NIS coaches can apply and will be generously rewarded with a salary that can range from Rs 50,000 to 2 lakhs,” said Mishra, who has served as India’s former youth coach.
“The idea is to offer high-quality coaching in the small centers. Also for the development of these trainers, they will hold one month coaching courses once a year at the national centers in Hyderabad and Bangalore so that they can improve their skills.
“We will shortly ask the state secretaries to propose the names of two coaches from their federal states. We will send four such trainers to the national centers for two weeks so that they can in turn pass on these experiences in their respective federal states.”
Among other plans, the BAI secretary said it will soon also host a national U11 championship.
“We will host a national U11 championship and it will be broadcast live on DD to inspire youngsters living in different parts of the country to continue this sport.
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