India To Host Badminton World Federation World Championships In 2026
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — India has been awarded the hosting rights of the Badminton World Federation World Championships in 2026. The Badminton World Federation also decided that the Sudirman Cup Finals would be staged in 2023.
With the federation unable to stage any tournaments in China in 2021, the championships scheduled for Suzhou, a city west of Shanghai, in 2021 were switched to Vantaa in Finland.
Suzhou was provided with the opportunity to host the 2023 edition. India, who were the initial hosts for 2023, was handed with the organization of the Badminton World Federation World Championships in 2026.
“Suzhou has demonstrated great capabilities in planning for the 2021 edition, and we look forward to bringing the TotalEnergies Badminton World Federation Sudirman Cup Finals back to China in 2023,” said Thomas Lund, Secretary-General of Badminton World Federation.
“We thank host organizers Suzhou, the Chinese Badminton Association, as well as the Badminton Association of India for their cooperation during this process.”
The Badminton World Federation World Championships is the most prestigious tournament in badminton. It is an individual championship where players compete for the title of World Champion.
There are five events offered — men’s singles, women’s singles, men’s and women’s doubles, and mixed doubles. First held in 1977 and originally hosted every two years, the Badminton World Federation World Championships have, since 2003, been held every year except the year of the Summer Olympic Games.
Meanwhile, the Sudirman Cup is the World Team Championships, held every two years, and one of the most prestigious titles in the sport. The cup is named after Dick Sudirman, a former Indonesian badminton player and the founder of the Badminton Association of Indonesia (PBSI).
Until 2003 the Sudirman Cup took place alongside the World Badminton Championships (Individuals) before becoming a stand-alone championship for the first time in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, in 2003.
India had hosted the Badminton World Federation World Championships in southern state Telangana’s capital Hyderabad in 2009. Since then, India has played hosts to various major badminton tournaments, including the 2014 Thomas and Uber Cup Finals, the Asian Championships, and the annual Badminton World Federation Super 500 event, the Yonex-Sunrise India Open.
Badminton Association of India’s President Himanta Biswa Sarma was confident that hosting the World Championship in 2026 would only help Indian badminton take bigger steps towards becoming a world powerhouse.
“Staging a tournament of the stature will be a great achievement for us at the Badminton Association of India as well as for the country,” said Sarma.
“We are thankful to the federation for considering India for badminton’s most prestigious and premier tournament, and I believe with world-class shuttlers coming to participate, it will be a great opportunity and motivation for the enthusiasts of the game and for the sport to see a huge growth across the country.”
Sarma was also recently elected as a Badminton World Federation Council member for the 2021-24 period.
“With a string of tournaments being canceled and not been able to stage due to the pandemic, globally, the federation had reached out to us with an alternate proposal,” said Ajay K Singhania, General Secretary, Badminton Association of India.
“We at the Badminton Association of India felt that this was a great opportunity for the country as well as for the badminton fraternity.”
India has won 10 World Championship medals, with reigning champion P.V. Sindhu leading the chart with gold, two silver, and two bronze medals. In contrast, Prakash Padukone won India’s first medal at the World Championships in 1983. In 2019, Olympic-bound B. Sai Praneeth had ended a 36-year-long wait for a men’s singles world championships medal at Basel, Switzerland.
(With inputs from ANI)
(Edited by Amrita Das and Ritaban Misra. Map by Urvashi Makwana)