Name: Pusarla Venkata Sindhu
Date of Birth: 5 July 1995
Top Achievement: Sindhu became the first ever Indian woman to win a medal in singles at the World Championships in badminton.
Trivia: Her father is an Arjuna award winning former volleyball player
On 10 August 2013, Sindhu became the first ever Indian woman to win a medal in singles at the World Championships. She trains at Hyderabad’s Gopichand Badminton Academy and is supported by Olympic Gold Quest, a not-for-profit foundation that identifies and supports Indian athletes. She broke into the top 20 in the Badminton World Federation rankings which were released on 21 September 2012. The highest world ranking that she has achieved is 10 and her current ranking stands at 12.
Childhood & early life:
Sindhu fell in love with badminton when she accompanied her father, a former Arjuna Award-winning player, to the volleyball court in Hyderabad, and became more fascinated by what was happening in the badminton courts next door. She eventually started playing badminton from the age of eight and was inspired by icon Pullela Gopichand’s victory at the All-England badminton championships in 2001.
Sindhu first learned the basics of the sport with the guidance of Mehboob Ali at the badminton courts of Indian Railway Institute of Signal Engineering and Telecommunications in Secunderabad. Soon after this, she joined Pullela Gopichand’s badminton academy.
Sindhu, who lived in Secunderabad, travelled 40 kms everyday to train at Gopichand’s Academy in Hyderabad. She won several tournaments as a result of this training.
In the under-10 years category, she won the 5th Servo All India ranking championship in the doubles category and the singles title at the Ambuja Cement All India ranking. In the under-13 years category, Sindhu won the singles title at the Sub-juniors in Pondicherry, doubles titles at the Krishna Khaitan All India Tournament, IOC All India Ranking, the Sub-Junior Nationals and the All India Ranking in Pune. She also won the under-14 team gold medal at the 51st National School Games in India.
- Winner – Malaysian Open Grand Prix, 2013
- Finalist – India Grand Prix International Gold, 2012
- Finalist – Dutch Open, 2011
- Winner – Asia Youth Under-19 Championship, 2012
- Winner – 35th National Junior (Under-19) Championships, 2010
- Winner – Indonesia International Badminton Challenge, 2011
- Winner – Tata Open India International Challenge, 2011
- Winner – Maldives International Badminton Challenge, 2011
Awards & Accolades:
- Arjuna Award 2013 (India’s second highest sporting award)
- FICCI Breakthrough Sportsperson of the Year 2014
Personal Life & Fun Facts:
Pusarla Venkata Sindhu was born to P. V. Ramana and P. Vijaya – both former volleyball players. Off the court, Sindhu cuts off from the game through yoga and swimming. She says that she has two idols in life-Gopi Sir and her father. She has an elder sister, Divya who is a doctor.
Sindhu likes collecting trinkets and going out for dinner with the family once or twice a week. Her favourite overseas destination is Switzerland but Hyderabad is where the heart lies for her. Her favourite film stars include Mahesh Babu and Prabhas.
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