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Determined Lakshya Sen wants to maintain astonishing rise in senior circuit

Lakshya Sen in action
Lakshya Sen in action
Suhas Nayse
EXPERT

Lakshya Sen doesn’t speak much, but generally leaves his opponents speechless when on court.

A teenage sensation, Lakshya Sen emerged as the fastest-rising shuttler on the planet before the pandemic brought everything to a standstill.

After dominating the junior circuit, the former world No. 1 in the Under-19 boys singles continued his ascent in the senior category too.

It is extremely tough for a junior to take the plunge into the ocean of men’s singles where the competition increases manifold. But Lakshya Sen took to it like a fish to water.

READ: Lakshya Sen becomes the youngest Indian men's singles shuttler to break into top 50

The Uttarakhand lad began climbed up the ratings with alacrity. He broke into the world’s top-25 in a matter of just two seasons.

Lakshya Sen made the world take notice of him by storming into the All England Championship quarter-finals in March this year. The impressive display also helped him increase in the rankings from 28 to 23.

Lakshya Sen was not even in the top- 00 in the first quarter of 2019 but produced a series of scintillating performances to reach a career-best world ranking of 23.

“It was nice to be among the world’s top 25. Nobody would have expected me to reach that far when I was not even in the top 150 in 2018. After the Senior National Badminton Championship in Guwahati in February 2019, I struck good form. I kept on winning on the international circuit. It turned out to be the best year for me,” said Lakshya Sen.

Nineteen-year-old Sen's maiden BWF World Tour win was at the Dutch Open, a BWF Tour Super 100 tournament. The teenager continued his dream run by winning the Belgian International, SaarLorLux Open in Germany and the Scottish Open in November 2019.

The next goal is to break into the world's top 15, says Lakshya Sen

The boy wonder of Indian badminton has no plans to stop his journey to being the best however!

“It was a memorable European stint for me. I won most of my matches during that period which helped me improve my world rankings quickly. I always wanted to perform well in the seniors and tell the world that my show in the juniors was not a fluke. I want to be the best Indian men’s singles player in another two years time. I also aim to break into the top-15 in the next six months,” said Lakshya Sen to Sportskeeda, whose elder brother Chirag Sen is also an international shuttler. Both train at the Bangalore-based Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy.
Lakshya Sen
Lakshya Sen

With lockdown being in place in Bangalore since last month, Lakshya Sen is missing the on-court practice even though he is doing his best at home to keep himself fit and active.

“I am doing physical fitness, yoga and meditation at home. I am also doing weight training and other strengthening exercises. We couldn't do much more than that. I am waiting for the unlock process to happen soon so that I can resume my training at the PPBA,” said Lakshya Sen.

Lakshya Sen's father, who is also one of the coaches at the PPBA, said he is planning to start playing international tournaments in August with the Denmark Open.

“If the present COVID-19 situation improves and travel restrictions are lifted then Lakshya will play in Denmark in August and then few tournaments in Europe. Our plan is to field him in maximum tournaments so that he keeps on improving his rankings. He will go all out in training as soon as the academy opens,” said DK Sen.

Sen gives the entire credit for his success to PPBA coaches and support staff.

“The PPBA is like my second home. They picked me up early when I was barely ten. My family also shifted from Uttarakhand to Bangalore three years ago. I am lucky to have strong support at my back which helps me to concentrate solely on badminton,” he signed off by saying.
Edited by S Chowdhury
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