Going beyond sports and into the sport! Badminton is the new cricket.
In our country, like most countries, there is a favourite sport. One that is played and enjoyed across regions, economic statuses, genders and mostly, on its streets. “Cricket” has enjoyed this status in our country for eons. And we have also gained international recognition through our achievements in cricket alone.
However, the one other sport that is now closer in its popularity and recognition on national and international platforms is “Badminton”.
India has created its own niche in the national and international circuit in present times with its quality of play, players and the sport it itself. Players from the past like P. Gopichand, Prakash Padukone to Saina Nehwal. PV Sindhu, to the recent emerging players like Lakshya Sen, Gayatri Gopichand, Teresa Jolly… between these names mentioned are so many more players who have made Indian badminton a force to reckon with. Coaches lIke Arif and VImal Sir back then to current academies run by Gopichand and Padukone all of them have been instrumental is making badminton the new cricket!
The wikipedia link below shares the status of badminton in our country and the players who have put us on the international map.
For the Statisticians
India is now one of the top badminton nations in the world and boasts a number of great players. https://www.sportskeeda.com/badminton/top-3-indian-men-s-singles-players-per-bwf-rankings sept 2020
Top 10 seeds from India of which 5 are current players on international badminton circuit. Nandu Natekar , Parupalli Kashyap, Ashwini Ponnappa, Jwala Gutta, Aparna Popat, Srikanth Kidambi, Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu, Pullela Gopichand, Prakash Padukone Upcoming talent: Young shuttlers Varun Kapur and Samiya Imad Farooqui have attained career-best second spots in their respective categories in the latest BWF’s junior world rankings, which features six Indians in the top-10- Jan 2021
Badminton Rankings – Handful of Indians in Top 50 – Not just 2-3 https://www.bwfbadminton.com/rankings/
Men – 6 Women – 2 Men’s Doubles – 3 Women’s Doubles – 3 Mixed Doubles –3 and we are only counting and adding to our tally.
PV Sindhu, who was on the 2018 Forbes list of the world’s highest paid sportswoman in seventh spot, signed her second sponsorship deal with Chinese sports brand Li-Ning in the tune of Rs 50 crore in Feb 2019 for sponsorship and equipment. She was previously with Lin Ning. Sindhu’s previous stint was for two years in 2014-2015 at sum of Rs 1.25 crore a year. In 2016, Sindhu was with Yonex for a Rs 3.5 crore per year contract for a period of three year. https://www.indiatoday.in/sports/badminton/story/pv-sindhu-li-ning-multi-year-deal-badminton-1451400-2019-02-08
Sindhu Li Ning Deal – The biggest Non Cricketer deal ever by an Indian Sportsperson https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/sports/p-v-sindhu-signs-approx-50-crore-deal-with-li-ning/articleshow/67899158.cms?from=mdr
Saina Nehwal 2015 – 25 crore deal https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/magazines/panache/from-banks-to-tyres-heres-what-pv-sindhu-is-endorsing/sound-of-music/slideshow/65753258.cms §Kidambi Srikanth Endorsements 35cr deal: https://www.insidesport.co/srikanths-li-ning-deal-reported-at-record-%E2%82%B9-35-cr-but-there-are-riders/
Li-Ning also roped in men’s doubles pair of Manu Attri and B Sumeeth Reddy for a deal of Rs 4 crore each for two years, while former Commonwealth Games champion Parupalli Kashyap has been offered a Rs 8 crore deal for two years.
Herbalife sponsors Lakshya Sen https://company.herbalife.co.in/sponsorships
Indian Badminton has scripted another first for the Olympic discipline sports in the country. The Badminton Association of India has become the first National Sports Federation for an Olympic discipline to ink a single ₹100 crore sponsorship deal. The BAI has renewed its existing equipment and apparel partner association with Yonex for the next four years. The extension deal is inked for ₹ 100 crore – @ ₹ 25 crore per annum. https://www.insidesport.co/first-%E2%82%B9100-crore-sponsorship-deal-indian-badminton-03052018/
The big names in badminton draw big bucks while the lower-rung of players are paid Rs. 11,000 per month. The young-and-upcoming talents get about Rs. 3 lakh for three months and those who have made a mark at Asian-level events and Commonwealth Games, depending on their world rankings draw the same amount on a monthly basis. §Badminton Events in India https://www.theindianwire.com/sports/top-domestic-badminton-tournaments-india-70854/
PBL now into its 6th year league features Indian shuttlers and top names from world badminton like Carolina Marin, Michelle li, Tai Tzu Ying amongst women. Jan O Jorgensen, Vicktor Axelson, Lee Yong Dae amongst men. Its title sponsor is Vodafone while Star Sports and Hotstar has its hosting rights. It is supported by Airtel, Maruti Suzuki and more.
For the Futuristics
Sports sponsorship in India grew by 17 percent in 2019 https://thebridge.in/sports-market/sports-sponsorship-india-grew-17-percent-2019-report/
At 15%, the Indian sports industry is one of the fastest-growing industries in the world, according to DataPOWA. This is a considerable increment over the global average of 5%. Moreover, the revenue from sports advertising has risen from $ 1 billion to ₹ 8,000 crores in 2020, according to JSW Sports CEO Mustafa Ghouse. The total advertising expenditure (or adex) for India increased by approximately 15 percent and climbed up to ₹ 72,169 crores in 2019, according to Zenith Global Advertising Expenditure Forecast. https://www.kreedon.com/growth-of-sports-industry-india/
The Indian sports and fitness goods market grew at a CAGR of 9% during 2014-2019. Indian Sports and Fitness Goods Market to Reach US$ 6,054 Million by 2024, Spurred by Rising Focus on Personal Wellbeing. https://www.imarcgroup.com/indian-sports-fitness-goods-market-rising-focus
Start low aim high
The one thing to always begin with is respect for the sport, your seniors and coaches. The kind that never dies or fades even if you are on the same level as them in terms of your own personal achievements. More than playing any sports itself is the mental aspect and the mind games that actually separate players within the game.. those from being winners to becoming champions.
“Champions keep playing until they get it right.” – Billie Jean King
Everything can be learnt and achieved through hardworking and patience even things as simple as observing your coaches and holding your racket correctly can make a big difference to the way you play it. Slowly building yourself up towards your goal is as good or perhaps even better than directly aiming for the top. It does not matter when or where or how you start, what matters is that, you start. Actually having the courage to go face someone on the other end of the court, is the beginning to which there can be no end. The possibilities to reach beyond limitations.
Listen and Learn
For beginners, or pro sports kids or elite players or even those interested in sports, these empowering conversations below might help to achieve their goals.
Listening to and learning from players who have risen from the times when the sport was not only low in its popularity but also very basic in terms of the facility provided for it.
Players who become champions in conversations on GET SET GO Beyond Sportss.
Through the journey of Aparna Popat, who is a former Indian badminton player having represented India in multiple international sporting events like 2000 & 2004 Olympics, Asian and Commonwealth Games and winner of 9 consecutive national badminton championships, the conversation moves from playing the sport to beyond the sport.
Watch her speak about her journey over the years, what has changed in the landscape of Indian badminton and what made her what she is today. Staying on the top of her game and what it takes to in 9 consecutive nationals. what was her mental state of mind and more.
Ms. Jwala Gutta, is an out of the box head-turner in the field of sports. She has been one of India’s premier #badminton players during her competitive playing years. And is the recipient of India’s 2nd highest sports award the “ARJUNA AWARD” . She speaks vociferously not only on issues related to the sport but is an advocate for women empowerment, fair play, gender equality, and much more.
Watch the episode as she speaks about the sport, being a specialist player, the fashion, the defiances and going beyond.
Nikhil Kanetkar is an Olympic badminton player from Pune India. Nikhil has represented India in 2004 Summer Olympics in men’s singles, and he also represented India in the Thomas Cup, All England Open, Asian Games, World Championships, Commonwealth Games, SAF Games, Swiss Open, French Open, Toulouse Open and numerous other championships. In 2011, he retired from competitive sports and set up the “Nikhil Kanetkar Badminton Academy” in Pune, India. With a vision of “Grooming Talent to Make Champions”. And currently is the Director and Head Coach of NKBA. He is also a columnist and commentator. Writing for the Marathi newspaper Sakal from Athens during the Olympics and covered the Badminton events of the 2016 Rio Olympics. Nikhil played after 7 years post retirement and won the Men’s Singles Title in the 35+ age category in the 41st Indian Masters (Veterans) National Badminton Championships 2016–17. In September 2017, he won the bronze medal in the same age group at the BWF World Senior Badminton Championship.
In this episode Nikhil talks about badminton and nurturing future players, parenting and coaching and the simple basics of racquets and techniques.
ALSO, Read our blog on Tips to Improve your badminton Grip