Local girl Poorva Barve along with national champion Aakarshi Kashyap will be the front-runners among a host junior shuttlers gunning for gold in the Under-21 women's section at the Khelo India Youth Games here.
Among the regular proven challengers to the throne will be Malavika Bansode (Maharashtra) and Gayatri Gopichand (Andhra Pradesh), daughter of chief national coach Pullela Gopichand, a media release issued Wednesday said.
Poorva, amongst all, is older and experienced and is in her transition year having completed her run as an Under-19.
She rounded off the year-end BWF World rankings ranked No.9.
The other three Malvika and Gayatri are a little younger, but on-court all the four-share healthy competition.
In the U21 men's section, India Under-19 No.1 Priyanshu Rajawat (Madhya Pradesh) leads the pack and has his task cut out with the presence of three of the top-5 ranked players in India which include no.3 Abhyansh Singh (Uttar Pradesh), no.4 Satish Kumar K (Tamil Nadu) and no.5 Akash Jadhav (Delhi).
In the Under-17 section, all eyes will be on Atharva Aras in the boys section, who will lead Maharashtras challenge.
Likewise, in the girls' section, Gujarat's Tasnim Mir is a favourite.
The state challenge is led by Ananya Phalke, Prerana Alvekar and Livia Fernandez.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)