New Delhi: Badminton Association of India (BAI) president Himanta Biswa Sarma on Sunday welcomed Badminton World Federation’s decision (BWF) to promote the India Open badminton tournament to a BWF Super 750 event and retain Syed Modi International in its World Tour calendar.
BWF on Saturday announced its decision to upgrade the India Open to a BWF Super 750 event from its existing Super 500 status. The change will come into effect starting the 2023 season.
India Open’s elevation in status materialized after the world badminton governing body decided to expand the BWF World Tour from 2023 to 2026. The move will see the number of events on the tour go up to 31, including the season-ending BWF World Tour Finals, from the existing 27.
“I would like to thank @bwfmedia for promoting the prestigious #IndiaOpen as a Super750 tournament & retaining the Super300 #SayedModi. India is on a mission to become a Badminton power house,” said Sarma in a tweet.
Last month, India won their maiden Thomas Cup title after beating 14-time champion Indonesia 3-0 in the final in Bangkok and the BAI president feels that the win in the prestigious tournament gives the country an opportunity to take badminton to the next level.
“Building on the Thomas Cup win,this will be an opportunity to take the game to the next level,” he added.
India Open’s elevated status will be a big boost for badminton in India as upgrade means an increase in prize money as well as the BWF world ranking points on offer from the tournament, which makes it a much more lucrative tournament for top players around the world.
Earlier this month, the BWF had also greenlit two lower-level International Challenger tournaments in India’s Nagpur and Raipur, which will be held this September.
After BWF’s decision to expand its World Tour from 2023 to 2026, the number of events on the tour will go to 31, including the season-ending BWF World Tour Finals, from the existing 27. The number of Super 1000, Super 750 and Super 500 tournaments have also gone up consequently.
The Malaysia Open has been upgraded to join the All England Open, China Open and Indonesia Open as the BWF World Tour’s top-tier Super 1000 events. On the other hand, the India Open and Singapore Open have been upgraded to Super 750 status alongside the existing events in China, Denmark, France and Japan.
The Super 500 level will see the addition of four new tournaments in Australia, Canada, Finland and Japan. Existing events in Hong Kong, China, Indonesia, Korea, Malaysia and Thailand will maintain their status. Two existing Super 100 tournaments, the HYLO Open and Orleans Masters, have also been elevated to the BWF World Tour Super 300 level.