Galaxy of stars for PSPB badminton

Last year, ONGC won the men’s team event as well as the singles titles, with former National champions Saurabh and Rituparna Das emerging as the victors.

H.S. Prannoy will be in action at the 39th PSPB inter-unit badminton tournament beginning on Tuesday.   -  GETTY IMAGES

World No. 11 Sameer Verma, H.S. Prannoy, B. Sai Praneeth, Ajay Jayaram and defending champion Saurabh Verma are among the leading players taking part in the 39th PSPB inter-unit badminton tournament which begins here on Tuesday.

Representing various Petroleum units, the players are expected to take part in the team championship as well as the individual events.

However, indications are that not all top names are going to be seen in the individual events unless their employers issue a firm directive.

Last year, ONGC won the men’s team event as well as the singles titles, with former National champions Saurabh and Rituparna Das emerging as the victors.

ONGC favourite

ONGC will once again be the overwhelming favourite for the men’s team title. Indian Oil will miss the services of P. Kashyap, who is reportedly suffering from fever.

In the women’s section, with Saina Nehwal not available and P. V. Sindhu no longer with the Petroleum sector, defending champion Bharat Petroleum has decided not to field a side.

In the singles, besides Rituparna, the other title-contender is Tanvi Lad.

The event concludes on February 2. The competition in the doubles will see specialists like Ashwini Ponnappa, N. Sikki Reddy, the vastly experienced Aparna Balan and Chirag Shetty, among a few others.

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