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Satwiksairaj Rankireddy, Ashwini Ponappa break into top 20 after Asia leg

Satwik and Ashwini, who had become the first Indian mixed doubles pair to reach the semifinals of a Super 1000 event, jumped 16 places to reach a career-best ranking of world number 19.

By: PTI | New Delhi |
February 2, 2021 5:11:07 pm
badminton match, Ashwini Ponappa, Satwiksairaj Rankireddy, Thailand Super 1000 series, Covid chaos, sports news, Indian express newsSatwiksairaj Rankireddy and Ashwini Ponnappa in action together. (File)

India’s mixed doubles pair of Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Ashwini Ponnappa was rewarded for its stupendous show at the recent-concluded Asia leg as it broke into the world’s top 20 in the latest BWF rankings announced on Tuesday.

Satwik and Ashwini, who had become the first Indian mixed doubles pair to reach the semifinals of a world tour Super 1000 event at the Toyota Thailand Open, jumped 16 places to reach a career-best ranking of world number 19.

The duo had stunned fifth seeded Malaysian combination of Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying in the quarterfinals.

In the men’s doubles, Satwik and Chirag Shetty retained their world number 10 spot after reaching the semifinals at Toyota Thailand Open.

Among others, world champion P V Sindhu remained static at world number 7, while Saina improved a place to world number 19.

In the men’s singles, Kidambi Srikanth moved up a spot to 13th, while Sameer Verma jumped four places to 27th spot after his quarterfinal showing at Toyota Thailand Open.

B Sai Praneeth, who lost in the opening round of the first event and was forced to withdraw from the second tournament after testing COVID-19 positive, slipped a spot to 17th, while Parupalli Kashyap, who struggled with a calf muscle injury, dropped two places to 26th spot.

M R Arjun and Dhruv Kapila, who started playing together in 2019, zoomed 33 places to 64th in the men’s doubles.

The BWF World Rankings reopened following the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals which concluded on Sunday.

The first tournament in the Olympic Qualifying period for the Race to Tokyo will be the Swiss Open Super 300, to be held from March 2 to 7.

The qualification period will end with the Indian Open (May 11-16), with the rankings published on May 18 to be considered for deciding the players making the cut for the Tokyo Games.

Last March, the BWF had frozen the world rankings, saying standings as on March 17 will be the basis for entry and seedings when it restarts the international calender.

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