New Delhi, April 5: Ace shuttler HS Prannoy and promising Anmol Kharab will spearhead the 10-member Indian challenge in the  Thomas and Uber Cup finals to be played in Chengdu China from 27 April to 5 May.

The squad is a mix of youth and experience with the senior selection committee deciding to have more options in singles considering the hectic schedule of all players this season.

Former World no 1 PV Sindhu informed the selectors that due to back-to-back tournaments leading up to the Olympics, she has decided to skip the Uber Cup to prepare for the Paris Games. 

A 10-member team for Thomas Cup will have five singles players with Kiran George joining HS Prannoy, Lakshya Sen, Kidambi Srikanth and Priyanshu Rajawat while Sai Pratheek will be the back-up doubles player to the two first-choice combinations, namely World No. 1 pair Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty and MR Arjun and Dhruv Kapila.

With most of the top players going through a tough Paris Olympic qualification phase in the run up to Thomas Cup , the selectors felt that it was important to have an additional singles player in the squad.

The decision on the Thomas Cup squad was taken after an online meeting of the selection committee that comprises Chief National coach Pulella Gopichand,  U Vimal Kumar, Jwala Gutta, Manjusha Kanwar, Partho Ganguly and Mallika Baruah Sarma.

For the Uber Cup, the selectors decided to give an opportunity to youngsters after top players in both singles and doubles pulled out.

 The selectors decided to go ahead with young players who have done well recently at the National Championships.

Speaking about the team combination, Badminton Association of India General Secretary Sanjay Mishra said, “The senior selection committee after a lot of discussion has decided the best possible combination for the Thomas Cup team to defend the title. 


The committee felt we needed to have one additional player in the singles while in doubles they have picked top two pairs and Sai Pratheek is selected as an additional doubles player after consultation with Mathias Boe (Danish doubles coach) just in case somebody is not fully fit or needs recovery.

“With all the experience as top-level players themselves and years of coaching experience, I believe they have picked a very balanced team and I believe these boys can win the title once again.

“The Uber Cup team also looks good with the young talented players. I wish them the best of luck and hope they will make the nation proud with their performances.”

The men’s team had created history two years ago in Thailand when they defeated formidable Indonesia 3-0 in the final to clinch their first-ever Thomas Cup crown.

Thomas Cup squad:
(Singles) HS Prannoy, Lakshya Sen, Kidambi Srikanth, Priyanshu Rajawat and Kiran George; (Doubles) Satwiksairaj Rankireddy, Chirag Shetty, MR Arjun, Dhruv Kapila and Sai Pratheek

Uber Cup squad:
(Singles) Anmol Kharb, Tanvi Sharma, Ashmita Chaliha and Isharani Baruah; (Doubles) Shruti Mishra, Priya Konjengbam, Simran Singhi and Ritika Thaker

must read