Finally, Pune joins PBL bandwagon

SPORTS REPORTER
Saturday, 6 October 2018

The Pune team has been named as Pune Seven Aces and will be owned by Bollywood actress, Taapsee Pannu and her agency KRI.

PUNE: Pune finally made its entry as the new team for the fourth edition of the Premier Badminton League (PBL) which is scheduled to be held from December 22 to January 13.  

The Pune team has been named as Pune Seven Aces and will be owned by Bollywood actress, Taapsee Pannu and her agency KRI. 

The league is owned by BAI and is organised by Sportzlive, the official license holders under the aegis of the Badminton Association of India. With the addition of Pune, the event will be a nine-team affair for the forthcoming season.

The league will be played across five cities which includes Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Bengaluru. Mumbai is all set to host the opening ceremony of the upcoming  edition.

The league which offers a prize purse of Rs 6 Crore was an eight-team competition last year with Delhi Dashers (Delhi), Mumbai Rockets (Mumbai), Awadhe Warriors (Lucknow), Hyderabad Hunters (Hyderabad), Chennai Smashers (Chennai), Bengaluru Raptors (Bengaluru) Ahmedabad Smash Masters (Ahmedabad) and North Eastern Warriors (North East) fighting for the top honours. 

Hyderabad, led by 2016 Olympic Champion Carolina Marin, had claimed the winning purse last season. 

In Season 3, the league attracted 60 world class players, including nine Olympic medallists and a pool of talented Indian players in the line-up for the league.

“We will see a mix of double headers and single clashes this season as all the nine teams will vie for the crown. The new season will also witness some of our young shuttlers like reigning Junior World Champion Lakshya Sen making his foray into the Elite League. With the auction scheduled to take place on October 8, the PBL has opened up new vistas for promising players and will act as a springboard in the development of Indian badminton,” said Atul Pandey, Executive Director, SportzLive.

The venues for the event will be Mumbai, Pune, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad and Bengaluru.

“I have played quite a bit of badminton in my early days. I always wanted to associate myself with the game in a big way and I have found the perfect avenue to express my passion through the League. I am confident that Pune Seven Aces will be a team to reckon with.”
—Taapsee Pannu (Owner, Pune Seven Aces)

“The number of people getting inclined towards badminton in this country has witnessed a steep rise in the last few years. The League started off with six teams in Season 1 and now we have nine franchisees within a span of three years, which is an incredible feat.”
—Himanta Biswa Sarma (President,  BAI)

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