Mumbai (Maharashtra) [India], March 16 (ANI): The All England Open is the oldest badminton tournament in the world and also one of the most prestigious. It has been the venue for some of the most iconic moments in badminton including the victory run by India's very own Prakash Padukone in 1980 and Pullela Gopichand in 2001.
This year's edition will again see the best in the game rub shoulders to lift the coveted trophy. The BWF Super 1000 event, in its 113th edition this year, will be played at the Arena Birmingham in England. The All England Open 2021 will get underway from Wednesday and it will see the likes of PV Sindhu, Kidam Srikanth and Saina Nehwal in action.
Indian star shuttlers Kidambi Srikankth, B Sai Praneeth, PV Sindhu and Saina Nehwal will be eager to put their best show ahead of the Tokyo Olympics 2021. The tournament is sure to deliver exciting action with top shuttlers like Carolina Marin, Nozomi Okuhara, Kento Momota and Viktor Axelson in the mix. However, Indian fans will be looking at Srikanth, Praneeth, Sindhu and Saina to bring home the glory.
A tournament win has eluded Sindhu as the World No. 7 finished runners-up in the preceding Swiss Open. The star athlete has not won a final on the tour since her gold medal-winning run at the World Championships in August 2019 at Basel. Srikanth, meanwhile, crashed out in the semi-final showdown to Denmark's Viktor Axelsen.
In the women's draw, Sindhu has an easy start, but looks at a potential bout with rival Carolina Marin in the semis. Saina faces a tough start with a clash against Mia Blichfeldt in the opening round. In the men's draw, expectations will be running high from Srikanth, Praneeth and other experienced players like Parupalli Kashyap, HS Prannoy and Sameer Verma.
In the men's doubles category, the sizzling duo of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty, ranked World No. 10, are expected to shine after their semi-final finish at the Swiss Open 2021. The women's doubles will see the regular entourage led by Ashwini Ponnappa/N Sikki Reddy, with the pairs of Meghana Jakkampudi/Poorvisha Ram and Ashwini Bhat/Shikha Gautam also in the fray.
The All England Open 2021 gets underway on March 17 and it will be telecast from 2:30 PM onwards Live on the Star Sports Network and Disney+ Hotstar VIP. (ANI)