Indian Thomas Cup Team Wins Popular Sportstar Aces Award 2023 –

Badminton News: The Thomas Cup-winning Indian team on Monday won the Sportstar Aces 2023 Popular Choice award for National Team of the Year at the Taj Mahal Palace in Mumbai.

India's badminton contingent ended a 70-year drought by beating 14-time champions Indonesia 3-0 in the final, marking a watershed moment in the sport's history, perhaps as important as the India's victory in the 1983 Cricket World Cup.

“Thank you Sportstar and The Hindu Group for recognizing badminton and our achievements last year. Badminton has shown a lot of individual brilliance in the past… But collectively, as a team, I would consider this Thomas Cup victory to be the best. We compared him to Kapil Dev and his team's victory in 1983,” badminton coach Vimal Kumar said.

“Thank you Sportstar and The Hindu for making this evening special for me and the entire team. “I would say it is a huge collective effort from everyone in the team and we can relate this to the 1983 World Cup,” added Lakshya Sen.

What makes the Thomas Cup victory even more remarkable is the fact that Indian badminton has largely focused on individuals and never really prioritized team matches.

To create a team spirit and cohesion, HS Prannoy created a WhatsApp group entitled “It’s coming home” for the 10 players of the team. They gathered for team dinners and devised unique methods of building team spirit, such as fining anyone who arrived late to team meetings and using the money after the quarterfinals to buy drums and horns to amplify the noise in the stadium. This step clearly has huge benefits.

World Championships bronze medalist Lakshya Sen beat Indonesian Anthony Sinisuka Ginting 8-21, 21-17, 21-16 in the men's first singles to give India a 1-0 lead.

In the first doubles match, Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty saved four match points before beating Mohammad Ahsan/Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo 18-21, 23-21, 21-19 to extend India's lead to 2- 0.

World Championships silver medalist Kidambi Srikanth defeated Jonatan Christie 21-15, 23-21 in straight games in the second men's singles match as India won its maiden title and became the sixth country to win the coveted tournament.

India had already reached the semi-finals of the Thomas Cup in 1952, 1955 and 1979. En route to the title, India defeated a strong Malaysian team. Denmark and India are the teams with a total of 20 Thomas Cup titles between them.

Article Tag: Thomas Cup 2022, India, Lakshya Sen

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Cheryl Tenny

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