‘Trump Match’ will challenge coaches, players: Srikanth

Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth on Tuesday said the new rule of ‘Trump Match’, introduced in the second edition of Premier Badminton League (PBL), will be a big challenge for coaches as it could make or break the fortunes of the teams.

We have never experienced this before and obviously it (The Trump Match) is exciting, feels Srikanth   -  AP

Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth on Tuesday said the new rule of ‘Trump Match’, introduced in the second edition of Premier Badminton League (PBL), will be a big challenge for coaches as it could make or break the fortunes of the teams.

“We have never experienced this before and obviously it (The Trump Match) is exciting. There will be a lot of strategy involved in it. I think it is a very big job and a challenge for any coach,” he told reporters here after the launch of Bengaluru Top Guns team.

A team winning the ‘Trump Match’, after selecting one of the five matches in a tie, would fetch them a bonus point and a negative point in case of defeat.

Bengaluru Top Guns coach Arvind Bhat admitted that the rule will throw a big challenge for the coach.

Bhat said the new rule involves lot of strategising, which can play a vital role in crunch matches.

“I think it is a very strategic thing, but at the same time it can play a very crucial role in matches that will have cascading effect on the League,” he said.

As per the Trump Match rules, both teams will specify which of the five matches will be their respective Trump Match along with the list of players at least one hour before the start of the tie with the referee.

Ace Indian women’s doubles shuttler Ashwini Ponnappa said the Trump Match is an exciting rule.

“The rule is exciting because anything can happen — you could still lose if you lose your Trump Match. So, that puts lot of pressure on players. It is a wonderful idea ... it will be pretty nerve-wracking for people to watch as well,” she said. India’s chief national coach Pullela Gopichand said Trump Match is a fantastic idea as it will keep spectators, viewers and players glued to the matches.

“What it basically does is, if the tie is 3-0 up, teams can actually lose last two matches and lose the tie. So, basically every match will go down to the wire,” he said.

The Trump Match will make players realise where they stand in terms of class and how they fare in high-pressure situations, Gopichand said.

The Premier Badminton League will start from January 2 wherein six franchisees — Delhi Acers, Hyderabad Hunters, Bengaluru Top Guns, Chennai Smashers, Mumbai Rockets and Awadhe Warriors — will compete for the top honour.

The opening day of the league will witness Awadhe Warriors taking on Mumbai Rockets in Mumbai.