India’s ace shuttler Saina Nehwal will skip the Syed Modi Grand Prix Gold tournament in Lucknow due to an Achilles tendon injury. After a landmark 2015, she managed to reach the finals of both the All England and World Championships. But Saina has been struggling with fitness lately. As a consequence, she was reluctant to play in the recently concluded Premier Badminton League (PBL) as 2016 is the Olympic year.
Saina who recently conferred the Padma Bhushan will miss out on ranking points for Rio qualification, as will the world number1 and last year’s runner up Carolina Marin who is also skipping the event. With this, the onus will be on PV Sindhu to please the home fans at the Syed Modi GPG. On the back of a successful Malaysia Masters outing, Sindhu will be looking forward to win back to back Grand Prix Gold titles.
Also, pulling out of the tournament is second seed Tommy Sugiarto in the Men’s singles event. K.Srikanth, who is going through a lean patch in terms of international success will be looking to make the most of this opportunity and go one better than last year by winning this year’s title. P.Kashyap, though, the defending champion will surely have other plans as he looks to make a comeback to international action after sitting out of the season enders of 2015 due to injury. A title win at Syed Modi GPG would be the best way he can do that!