India's Pratul Joshi and Ruthvika Shivani Gudde lead the singles seedings for men and women respectively in the USD 17,500 9th Tata Open International Badminton Challenge to be held from tomorrow. The qualifying rounds of the tournament conducted by the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy are to be held on the first day followed by the main draw matches from December 1 at the Cricket Club of India's courts, it was announced at a media conference today. "India's badminton talent are setting the bar higher.
The response for the tournament has been very good," said shuttle ace Prakash, founder and director of the organising academy, at the media conference while announcing the tournament details. Siril Verma and Shreyansh Jaiswal of India are seeded two and three in men's singles behind Joshi while Reshma Karthik, also from the host nation, is seeded eighth in women's singles. Lakshya Sen, who trains at the Prakash Padukone Academy in Bengaluru and is touted as a top future prospect among men along with Siril Verma, is also in the fray. In men's doubles, Sze Fei Goh and Nur Izzuddin of Malaysia are the top seeds while in the women's pairs event Indonesian duo of Nisak Puji Lestari and Merisa Cindy Sahputri are seeded as number one. The finals of the tournament, which has attracted players from top Asian badminton playing nations like Malaysia and Indonesia, are to be held on December 4. The men's and women's singles winners would take home USD 1,313 while the winners in men's, women's and mixed doubles would be richer by USD 1,383. Prizes are on offer for players reaching the last 16 too.
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