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  Bhagat nominated as Para Badminton Player of the Year
11 Nov 2021

Badminton World Federation (BWF) today nominated Odisha ace Pramod Bhagat for both Male Para Badminton Player of the Year and Para Badminton Pair of the Year 2020-2021. Reigning Paralympics and World champion Bhagat was named among six shuttlers for the Male Para Badminton Player of the Year by the badminton world body but none of his compatriots featured in the able-bodied awards categories.

Bhagat, who had won a historic gold medal in the mens singles SL3 class in the Tokyo Olympics in September, was also named along with Manoj Sarkar for the newly introduced Para Badminton Pair of the Year, with five other nominees. Sarkar had bagged a bronze in the mens singles SL3 class in the Tokyo Olympics.


The 33-year-old Bhagat, who had contracted polio when he was four years old, picked up the sport after watching his neighbours play. Initially, he competed against able-bodied players before getting into competitive para badminton in 2006. Bhagat is also current world number one and Asian champion in SL3. In SL3 classification, athletes with lower limb impairment compete.

Due to COVID-19 pandemic, the eligibility period was extended to cover the 2020 and 2021 seasons (November 1, 2019 to October 31, 2021). The winners will be announced during the Bali Leg of the BWF World Tour in Indonesia in November-December. The two new award categories were introduced -- Pair of the Year and Para Badminton Pair of the Year.

Male Player of the Year:
Anders Antonsen, Viktor Axelsen (both Denmark); Wang Yi Lyu (China), Yuta Watanabe (Japan).
Female Player of the Year: Chen Yu Fei (China), Carolina Marin (Spain), Tai Tzu Ying (Taipei), Akane Yamaguchi (Japan).
Pair of the Year: Kim Soyeong-Kong Heeyong (Korea), Greysia Polii-Apriyani Rahayu (Indonesia), Wang Chi Lin-Lee Yang (Taipei), Yang Yi Lyu-Huang Dong Ping (China), Yuta Watanabe-Arisa Higashino (Japan).
Most Improved Player of the Year: Aaron Chia-Sho Wooi Yik (both Malaysia), Pornpawee Chochuwong (Thailand), Lee Zii Jia (Malaysia), Wang Chi Lin-Lee Yang (Taipei).
Most Promising Player of the Year: Line Christophersen (Denmark), Toma Junior Popov (France), Kunlavut Vitidsarn (Thailand), Brian Yang (Canada).
Male Para Badminton Player of the Year: Pramod Bhagat (India), Cheah Like Hou (Malaysia), Daiki Kajiwara (Japan), Kim Jungjun (Korea), Lucas Mazur (France), Qu Zimo (China).
Female Para Badminton Player of the Year: Cheng Hefang, Liu Yutong (both China); Faustine Noel (France), Leani Ratri Oktila (Indonesia), Sujirat Pookkham (Thailand), Sarina Satomi (Japan).
Para Badminton Pair of the Year: Pramod Bhagat-Manoj Sarkar (India), Lucas Mazur-Faustine Noel (France), Kim Jungjun-Lee Dong Seop (Korea), Sarina Satomi-Yuma Yamazaki (Japan), Mai Jianpeng-Qu Zomo (China), Hary Susanto-Leani Ratri Oktila (Indonesia).


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