In the most recent BWF World Rankings, which were released on Tuesday, Satwiksairaj Rankireddy and Chirag Shetty jumped two spots to secure their career-best rating of World Number 1. After the illustrious Prakash Padukone, Saina Nehwal, and Kidambi Srikanth, they are the first Indian doubles combination and the fourth Indian overall to achieve the milestone of becoming the world’s top player in the BWF rankings.
Days prior, in Hangzhou, China, the Indian team had captured their first-ever gold medal at the Asian Games in badminton. Satwik-Chirag won the gold medal by defeating South Korean competitors Choi Soi Gyu and Kim Won Ho in straight games (21-18, 21-16). Since Leroy D’sa and Pradeep Gandhe earned a bronze medal at the 1982 Asian Games, they are the first Indian duo to win a medal in men’s doubles.
In addition, Satwik-Chirag was crucial to the Indian team’s silver medal-winning effort. China won the final, 3-2, over India. Five trophies have been won by the team in 2023: gold at the Asian Games, Indonesia Open Super 1000, Korea Open Super 500, Badminton Asia Championships, and Swiss Open Super 300.
Other Indians included PV Sindhu, who moved up two spots to claim the 13th rank in the women’s singles despite failing to win a medal at the Asian Games, and HS Prannoy, who moved down to the world no. 8 ranking after winning a men’s singles medal in the continental showcase after 41 years. In the men’s team event, Lakshya Sen, who won both of his matches to contribute to the team’s silver medal winning effort, also lost ground to world number 15.
Kidambi Srikanth moved up to number twenty. Gayatri Gopichand and Treesa Jolly, the women’s doubles team, moved up one spot to take 16th place.