Badminton Stats: Indians who have won the Thailand Open title

The sport of Badminton was introduced in India by British military officers in the 19th century. Soon, the sport gained popularity among the Indian elite which resulted in the formation of the All India Badminton Association in 1934. In the decades that followed, India produced many internationally recognized badminton legends. Prakash Padukone and Pullela Gopichand were the first Indians to win the All England Open Badminton Championships (one of the most prestigious Badminton tournaments) in 1980 and 2001 respectively. 

With players like Saina Nehwal, PV Sindhu, Kidambi Srikanth, and doubles pair Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty making their mark on the international stage, India is right now a dominant force in the sport. These athletes have won numerous international titles, with Nehwal and Sindhu each winning Olympic medals – a bronze for Nehwal in London 2012 and a silver for Sindhu in Rio 2016, Srikanth becoming a number 1 in the men’s event, and Satwik-Chirag scripting history for the nation on multiple occasions. With this, let’s take a look at India’s performance at one of the prestigious international events, the Thailand Open. The Indians to have won the Thailand Open title are Saina Nehwal, Srikanth Kidambi, Sai Praneeth, and Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/ Chirag Shetty.

Who are the Indians to have won the Thailand Open title?

1) Saina Nehwal (Edition – 2012, Event – Women’s Singles)

Before making an appearance at the 2012 London Olympics, Indian badminton player Saina Nehwal secured a victory at the Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold, coming from behind to defeat Thailand’s Ratchanok Inthanon. At the time, Nehwal, who was 22 years old and ranked fifth in the world, overcame Inthanon with scores of 19-21, 21-15, and 21-10 at the C U Sports Complex in Bangkok. This marked her second championship of the year, following her victory at the Swiss Open in March. Despite an unsteady start, the top-seeded Nehwal drew on her experience and exceptional net play to outperform her 17-year-old second-seeded opponent.

2) Srikanth Kidambi (Edition – 2013, Event – Men’s Singles)

At the Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold tournament, Srikanth Kidambi clinched the men’s singles championship, overpowering local hero and the then-eighth-ranked global player, Boonsak Ponsana. He won with decisive scores of 21-16, 21-12. This triumph established Kidambi as the inaugural male player from India to secure the Thailand Open title.

3) Sai Praneeth (Edition – 2017, Event – Men’s Singles)

On June 4, 2017, B. Sai Praneeth, the third-seeded player from India, won in the men’s singles category at the Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold badminton championship. The final match was a hard-fought encounter against Jonatan Christie, the fourth-seeded player from Indonesia, with Praneeth emerging victorious with scores of 17-21, 21-18, 21-19 in a match lasting 71 minutes, held at the Nimibutr Stadium in Bangkok, Thailand. This marked the 24-year-old Indian’s maiden Grand Prix Gold title victory and built on his earlier success at the 2016 Canada Open.

4) Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/ Chirag Shetty (Edition – 2019, Event – Men’s Doubles)

Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty achieved an exceptional victory in the decisive match, securing their first Super 500 tournament title. The duo overcame world champions Li Jun Hui and Liu Yu Chen with scores of 21-19, 18-21, and 21-18, marking one of their earliest notable title triumphs. The achievement is made even more remarkable by the fact that Rankireddy and Shetty entered the tournament unseeded.

Indians who have won the Thailand Open title

EditionEventAthlete (s)
2012Women’s SinglesSaina Nehwal
2013Women’s SinglesSrikanth Kidambi
2017Men’s SinglesSai Praneeth
2019Men’s DoublesSatwiksairaj Rankireddy/ Chirag Shetty

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