Home2016The story of one Sen stealing the limelight in the absence of...

The story of one Sen stealing the limelight in the absence of another

India did not lose any sleep when they had to withdraw one of the Sen brothers – 18-year-old Chirag, who was seeded second, from the 19th edition of the Badminton Asia Junior Championships in Bangkok. 

Instead the younger of the Sen brothers – 16-year-old Lakshya – seeded only a lowly 15 – has kept India's flag flying in the individual events when he marched into the boys' Under-19 semi-final on Friday with a gutsy performance in a come from behind 16-21, 21-12, 21-19 win over Thai sixth seed Korakrit Laotrakul in 69 minutes.

Hailed as a "future star" of Indian badminton, coach Sudhir Kumar Singh, could not help heaping praise on his prized possession who once again showed "patience and discipline" on court to carve out his win over Korakrit. 

The win pits him in the semi-final against China's Sun Feixiang, the number eight seed. Feixiang has been made the hot favourite for the singles title after he knocked out Thailand's top seed Kanthaphon Wangcharoen 21-16, 21-8 in 47 minutes in his quarter-final encounter.
It was a double blow for the Thais when Lakshya sent out Korakrit as the vociferous home supporters fell into silence.

Lakshya, who is the India Under-17 champion, is a product of the Prakash Padukone Academy. He has set himself lofty targets to be professional badminton player. Many Indians want to be doctors, engineers, scientists, lawyers and academicians but Lakshya has not  given any thought that.

"I want to make a name for myself as a professional badminton player. I maybe young and still learning the tricks of trade in badminton…but my badminton journey has begun. I need to start now as I have set personal targets and top of the list is to qualify for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo. If I don't make the grade to Tokyo than it is the 2024 Olympics," said Lakshya after his win.

"I want to be like Prakash Padukone…he is my coach and he is my idol" added Lakshya in the same breath as he spoke of the former All England champion.
On his shortcomings he was quick reply: "I need to work on my physical strength and be more confident of my game. Apart from that I do not fear playing any of the big names. Now that I am in the semi-finals (which has assured him of the bronze medal), I will be fully focused on playing my Chinese opponent."

In this respect he draws inspirations from Indian badminton greats Saina Nehwal and K. Srikanth, both of whom will be playing in the Rio Olympics.
Sudhir said: "there is no fear playing the Chinese players and Saina and Srikanth have beaten the top Chinese players even in China to win Superseries titles."

Sudhir described Lakshya as a "hard worker, very disciplined, focused, very serious and a good learner" in his game. 

"On top of that he is listens to instructions and has patience on court – two vital ingredients in a game of badminton," added Sudhir.


Most Popular