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India’s badminton team wins the Thomas Cup 2022
India’s badminton team won the Thomas Cup in Bangkok last week, putting cricket in the shade and leaving former players optimistic that the sport may “grow on this achievement.”The men beat Malaysia, Denmark, and 14-time winner Indonesia to win badminton’s Davis Cup. The country’s only previous top men’s tournament wins were by Prakash Padukone in 1980 and Pullela Gopichand in 2001.
“From 2017 when there were three good singles players in Sai Praneeth, (Kidambi) Srikanth and (HS) Prannoy, I had faith in them,” Kumar told AFP.
“But as a team, they couldn’t play together for various reasons.
“This win comes after years of hard work.”
“And with the money (that comes in) they can get grassroots development for the next line of players.”
“For three days, all of India was looking at badminton. I think that is their achievement, more than winning the Thomas Cup they gave Indians so much joy,” journalist G Rajaraman told AFP.
“Badminton is one of our better sports in terms of results, achieved from Prakash (Padukone’s) time going down to Gopi (Pullela Gopichand) and more recently through the women,” said Rajaraman.
“It’s a phenomenal success,” Gopichand was quoted as saying by the Indian media.
“What our boys achieved is simply incredible. It was my dream. I am confident that we can build on this success.”
“Nearly every player would have played with Gopi or his academy at some point of time,” said Rajaraman.
“I think that kind of selfless approach of his, where he has got in foreign coaches even in his own academy has helped India become a better badminton nation.”