Parupalli Kashyap, the icon player of Indian Badminton League (IBL) franchise Banga Beats, feels that timing of the event is “perfect”.
“For me, personally, the IBL is happening at the perfect time. I’m playing well, and I have a chance to do well here. We will play against some of the top players in the world, and a few wins against them will give me a huge boost,” Kashyap said, at a press conference here on Tuesday.
India’s best ranked men’s singles player will compete at the BWF World Championships at Guangzhou (China), before returning to lead the Bangalore team at the IBL.
Asked about his training routine ahead of the World Championships, Kashyap replied: “The conditions in China are much slower, and the rallies are usually longer. I’m working on sustaining long rallies at practice now.”
Different kettle of fish
The IBL, meanwhile, kicks off on August 14, three days after the World Championships end. With icons and auctions, the city-based league is similar to cricket’s Indian Premier League in concept, but Kashyap insists that badminton is a different kettle of fish.
“Badminton, being an individual sport, is not at all like cricket. In cricket, and in the IPL, you need the bowlers, batsmen and fielders to interact with each other. In badminton, you have to do everything yourself. For example, I cannot imagine the Chinese players opening up too much about their strategies to teammates,” he said.
Kashyap added he “will not interact” a great deal with teammate Hu Yun, whom he could face in the third round at Guangzhou.
U. Vimal Kumar, the chief coach, spoke about the team’s thought process at the auction. “Initially, we did not plan to bid for Yun. When his name came up, we put in a bid, just for fun,” he said.
On local star Ashwini Ponnappa’s exclusion from the squad, Kumar stated that since Kashyap was picked first as the icon player, Ashwini had to be given the miss. “However, there could have been value in having Ashwini with us,” Kumar said.
The Banga Beats also announced the addition of State junior champion, S. Daniel Farid, to its squad. Farid will gain tremendous learning experience by being around some of the world’s best players. Farid, however, will not play any of the matches.