Badminton-Indian rookie beats idol Hidayat at his own game

NEW DELHI, April 25 Thu Apr 25, 2013 4:19pm IST

NEW DELHI, April 25 (Reuters) - Indian rookie H.S. Prannoy fulfilled a long-cherished dream on Thursday, playing childhood idol Taufik Hidayat and beating him by frequently unleashing effective backhand strokes he modelled on the retiring Indonesian stalwart.

Former world and Olympic champion Hidayat, 31, will hang up is racket in June and he clearly struggled against an Indian 11 years younger as the Indonesian went down 26-24, 21-9 in the round of 16 at the India Open super series tournament.

Prannoy looked dazed after wrapping up the victory in 40 minutes to reach the quarter-finals where the Indian is set to face world number one Lee Chong Wei of Malaysia.

"It was a dream to play him. More than winning, I was thinking more about coming and playing him here," said the Indian wiping a bead of sweat from his brow before paying rich tribute to the versatile Indonesian.

"He's a very fancy player. We get to see so many fancy strokes from him.

"Obviously in childhood days, everybody wants to imitate their idols. I did it so many times. I'm a professional player now and I have my own strokes. But if you notice, I have a strong backhand and I learnt it from watching him, the basic technique of hitting a backhand," said the Indian.

Hidayat did not, however, linger to confirm the similarity and immediately left the court.

A bigger challenge awaits Prannoy in the next round and the Indian said it was just the kind of exposure he was looking for.

"It's a dream tournament for me, playing Taufik and Lee Chong Wei back-to-back. I'll do my best." (Editing by Patrick Johnston)

Comments (0)
This discussion is now closed. We welcome comments on our articles for a limited period after their publication.

  • Most Popular
  • Most Shared

India-WTO Row

REUTERS SHOWCASE

Market Eye

Market Eye

Nifty falls most in nearly 3-1/2 weeks; Sensex down over 400 points  Full Article 

Factory Activity

Factory Activity

Factories post fastest growth for 17 months in July  Full Article 

Paying for Bail

Paying for Bail

Jailed Subrata Roy gets office to negotiate hotel sales.  Full Article 

Rupee Dips

Rupee Dips

Rupee posts biggest weekly loss since record lows in August.  Full Article 

Reviving Infosys

Reviving Infosys

CEO Sikka says to improve business with new growth avenues  Full Article 

Outlook Slashed

Outlook Slashed

ArcelorMittal cuts outlook as ore prices hit mining  Full Article 

Re-gaining Momentum

Re-gaining Momentum

China, Asian factory growth gathers pace; Europe falters  Full Article 

Factory Lockout

Factory Lockout

Pfizer says threats to managers force staff lockout at Mumbai factory .  Full Article 

Gold Smuggling

Gold Smuggling

In cat-and-mouse game, India uncovers new gold smuggling route.  Full Article 

Reuters India Mobile

Reuters India Mobile

Get the latest news on the go. Visit Reuters India on your mobile device.  Full Coverage