Kidambi Srikanth Thanks Gopichand After Becoming World Number 1

Target is to do India proud at Tokyo Olympics’ New world No 1 K Srikanth wants to keep improving

File image | NOAH SEELAM AFP

The ace Indian shuttler dethroned Denmark's Viktor Axelsen to reach to the top of rankings.

Meanwhile, the mixed doubles pair of Satwik Rankireddy and Ashwini Ponnappa also booked their place in quarter-finals of the CWG 2018 after brushing aside the Malaysian duo of Kristen Tsai and Nyl Yakura 21-10, 21-7 in just 25 minutes.

Srikanth, who is now the top seed in the 2018 Commonwealth Games badminton men's singles, defeated Sri Lanka's Niluka Karunaratne 2-0 (21-10, 21-10) in just 33 minutes to reach the quarterfinals. Srikanth, who now has 76,895 points, clinched the top spot after Axelsen lost at least 1660 points because he could not defend his Malaysian Open title because of scheduling issues.

India's chief national badminton coach P. Gopi Chand said that it was a fantastic feeling to see another player from his academy become the World No. 1; K. Srikanth achieved the feat in the men's singles on Thursday.

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Kidambi Srikanth became a force to reckon with in 2013, when he won the Thailand Open. Here is the list of his title-winning achievements previous year.

Srikanth's meteoric rise coincided with world champion Viktor Axelsen's injury lay-off as the Danish star, forced to spend time off the court, slipped one place to second spot after failing to defend his Malaysia Open title that he had clinched in April previous year. "It will help him focus more on winning tournaments", the former Indian shuttler was quoted as saying by the report. This will help Srikanth become more relaxed.

Srikanth, who had clinched titles at Indonesia, Australia, Denmark and Australia past year, rose to greater heights after he dispatched three-time Olympic silver medallist Lee Chong Wei in straight games in the crucial mixed team final to earn India a historic gold at the ongoing Commonwealth Games. However, he missed out on the World No. 1 ranking after suffering an injury late previous year.

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