Saina Nehwal Slams BWF for ‘Crammed’ Schedule in 2018
Top Indian shuttler Saina Nehwal slammed the BWF for a "cramped" international calender, which hardly leaves any time for players to recover from injuries or be at their best at important tournaments.
Badminton World Federation (BWF) has made it mandatory for top shuttlers to play at least 12 tournaments in a revamped schedule for 2018.
Next year’s scheduled by BWF is too crammed, it is not right for the top players. I need more time to get the best out of me. I can’t play back-to-back events. I can just participate but can’t win. After the PBL we have three tournaments. Again before the World Championship there are three super series, so I am not understanding why BWF decided to go for such a schedule. It will be too tiring, too challenging.Saina Nehwal
"I don't have any answers. It will come down to fitness and my priority will be fitness. I don't believe in tournaments anymore, so no tournament, no titles, just fitness," added the Indian ace, who would play for Awadhe Warriors for the third season of the Premier Badminton League.
BWF has made it compulsory for the world's top 15 players in the singles events and top 10 pairs in the doubles disciplines to play a minimum of 12 tournaments or face a penalty.
Asked if it would be fair to expect players to play at the Senior Nationals next year, Nehwal said: "Nationals is nothing compared to the crammed schedule that we have next year. It is something for three days and it is fine. It hardly makes any difference."
"So if you have time you can work on these areas otherwise it is challenging and so small injuries become big injuries and it takes lot of time to come out of it." Olympic champion and two-time World Championship gold medallist Carolina Marin also echoed similar voices.
Marin also termed the proposed service rule change as "stupid" which would be implemented from All England championship next year.
"The problem would be for the doubles players, not so much for the singles. May be it is something bit of stupid to do it but let’s see how it works. It will affect players who are very tall," she said.
A former World Number 1, Marin slipped to number four and the Spaniard said she would look to get back her numero uno status next year.
"It is really difficult to be at the top consistently. I feel it is impossible. But I want to keep improving myself and go to the top," said Marin, who would turn up for Hyderabad Hunters in the PBL this season.
Asked about the season, Marin said:
The third edition of PBL will have eight teams with 80 players, including eight World Championship medallist and nine Olympic medallist, competing over 23 days across Delhi, Lucknow, Guwahati, Hyderabad and Chennai.
The tournament begins on 23 December.
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