Sankar had a great year as he moved from the No 8 rank at the beginning to end as the No 1 in the Under-15 section. His two wins in the National ranking events in Kakinada and Tirupur changed his status. “Those two titles earned me important ranking points which moved by ranking to India No.1 and i was seeded No.1 in the National Championship as well. Hopefully, I shall get selected to represent India in the Asian Badminton Championship 2018 by virtue of my rankings,” says the Fireball Academy product.
His main challenge now will be to replicate the success in the higher categories. As of now he is ranked No 35 in the Under-17 category and No 51 in the Under-19 category. But he is planning to play in two international tournaments next year and also the Nationals which should give him valuable experience in his progress.
The one factor that weighs in favour of Sankar is that he is a left-hander and there are not many southpaws in the game in India. In Kakinada, he played Siddhant Gupta in the final and in Tirupur, his opponent was Pranav Rao Gandham, a Gopichand Academy product from Telangana.. “In both the matches, I lost the first set but i was able to come back in the second and third games and I enjoyed both the matches,” recalls Sankar.
The Chennai boy does not find transition from the sub-junior to the junior category very difficult. “I am representing Tamil Nadu in this year’s National Junior Championship, Assam. I do not find the transition difficult,” he says.
Sankar does not feel he lacks any facilities in terms of coaching or practice because he is happy with the Velammal New Gen Fireball Badminton Academy. “NBA also sees to that players requirements are taken care of,” he notes. He is egerly looking forward to watch the top international players in action during the Premier Badminton League in Chennai early in 2018. Certainly, since most of the players are right handers it is pretty much advantageous to be a lefty.