December 11, 2012

Ace shuttlers ready themselves for the 2012 edition of Tata Open India International Challenge

  • Tata Open India International Challenge 2012, the badminton tournament, will be held from December 12-16, 2012 at Cricket Club of India, Mumbai
  • Tata group and Tata Capital partner for the tournament
  • The tournament will host contingents from Indonesia, Korea, Chinese Taipei, Malaysia, Singapore and Thailand, along with a strong contingent of leading Indian players

Mumbai: With Indian badminton getting enhanced recognition, the Tata group and Tata Capital, in association with Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy (PPBA), today announced the 2012 edition of Tata Open India International Challenge (Tata Open), at a press conference in Mumbai.

India, with its growing footprint in the international sports arena, is a promising training destination for aspiring world-class shuttlers. The Tata group, in its commitment to support and encourage the culture of sports in India, launched the Tata Open badminton tournament in 2008.

Tata Open 2012 has been organised by PPBA, under the auspices of the Maharashtra Badminton Association (MBA), and will get underway at Cricket Club of India (CCI), Mumbai from December 12 to 16, 2012.

The tournament carries a prize money of $15,000. Tata Open is a part of the international circuit badminton tournaments that earns ranking points for players. The qualifying rounds of the tournament will be held on December 12, 2012 and the main draw will commence on December 13, 2012, with the finals taking place on December 16, 2012. Oliver Guruge of Sri Lanka will be the referee for the tournament.

The 2012 edition of Tata Open has received an excellent response from the international badminton fraternity.

In the Men's Singles category, Saurabh Varma (last year’s national champion and world no 34) is the top seed and Guru Sai Dutt (world no 42) is the second seed. Former national champion and former world top 25 player, Anup Sridhar too will be seen in action. There are many young Koreans, Malaysians and Indonesians in the fray to challenge the seeded players.

Similarly, in the Women's Singles category, Simone Prutsch of Austria (world no 71) is the top seed. Current national champion Sayali Gokhale, former Tata Open Champion PC Thulasi and several Korean and Indonesian players are all likely to make this an action-packed contest.

In the Men’s Doubles category, the star attraction will be one of the best doubles / mixed players in world badminton Lee Yong Dae of Korea (London Olympics bronze medalist). Also in the fray are Malaysians Nelson Wei Keat Heg and Ee Yi Teo, seeded at no 4. The tournament will also see Indonesian, Chinese and Korean combinations, along with two Indian pairs, Arun Vishnu / Tarun Kona and Pranav Chopra / Akshay Dewalkar, who will make a bid for the title.

Indonesia with 30 players, Malaysia with 19 players, Chinese Taipei with 18 players and Korea with 17 players are the main contenders at the tournament, along with 91 players from India. This event is a part of the Badminton World Federation’s ranking circuit and young players gain valuable ranking points by competing.

Speaking on the occasion, Atul Agrawal, vice president, corporate affairs, Tata Services, said, “The Tata group has always been a keen supporter of nation-building activities, academics and sports. Tata Open provides a great platform for Indian badminton players to compete with their international counterparts. We are delighted at the enthusiastic response and wish all contingents the very best for the competition.”

Amar Sinhji, head, HR, Tata Capital, said, “We, at Tata Capital, are proud to partner an initiative like Tata Open that not only patronises the sport but also gives the Indian badminton community an opportunity to experience and be a part of a world-class tournament.”

Prakash Padukone, director, PPBA, said, “As the sport gains popularity in India, especially after an Olympic win, we at PPBA are greatly encouraged to host the 5th Tata Open. The tournament has received excellent response from internationally ranked players yet again and promises to be a visual feast for badminton enthusiasts. The Tata Open continues to serve as an excellent platform for players to gain exposure and better their world rankings.”

CCI will host the tournament at their world-class, air-conditioned courts. Yonex shuttlecocks will be used for the tournament.

For further information about the tournament, log on to www.ppba.in