The Tamil Nadu Badminton League is gaining ground. It now has renowned players in its ranks
Getting Aditya Elango for an interview was difficult. Even more difficult was getting to have a conversation with him, without interruptions from his phone. As the organiser of the Tamil Nadu Badminton League (TNBL), these calls revolved around the tournament, whose finals will be played today at JJ Indoor stadium.
“There is so much running around to do. Right from taking care of players’ accommodation to coordinating with the teams,” he said apologetically. “I have lost four kilos in 10 days,” he added.
Twenty four-year-old Aditya, a badminton player himself, is the brain behind this league, which is in its second year. Organising a tournament at such an elaborate level was definitely not easy. “To start with, I am just 24 and people did not initially take me seriously. When I discussed the concept of organising a badminton league a couple of years ago, people weren’t sure. I had to leave it then, but I continued with my game, not losing sight of my dream.”
In the following years, Karnataka Badminton League and Maharashtra Badminton League was organised in their respective states. “I then approached the badminton fraternity here again, with a more concrete plan about Tamil Nadu’s own league. This time, it clicked.”
Six months of planning and long working hours made possible the presence of top international and state players in the first edition of the league in July last year. However, Aditya believes the second edition is bigger and better.
“The other badminton leagues focus on local players, but here we have put international and local players in the same team, which were formed after a proper auction. This time we have three international Olympians and Arjuna Awardee Chetan Anand, who participated in TNBL last year too. ”
To arrange the sponsors was a tough task but everything eventually fell in place. “We have six teams – Chennai Singams, Kovai Panthers, Erode Eagles, Dazzle Force, Jhaver Smashers and Ed 6 Skill Angels. An auction was held prior to the main event when the owners bought the players. A procedure like this gives players an opportunity to make monetary benefits,” he added.