Saina Nehwal Biography

Biography of Saina Nehwal

Saina Nehwal born 17th March, 1990 in Dhindar, Hisar, Haryana is an Indian badminton player who attained a career best ranking of 2 in December 2010 by Badminton World Federation.

She is the First Indian to win a medal in Badminton at the Olympics. She achieved this feat by winning the Bronze medal at the London Olympics 2012 on 4th August, 2012. She is the first Indian to win the World Junior Badminton Championships and was also the first Indian to win a Super Series tournament, by clinching the Indonesia Open with a victory over higher – ranked Chinese Wang Lin in Jakarta on 21st June, 2009. Saina is supported by the Olympic Gold Quest.

Saina Nehwal Childhood Life

Saina completed her schooling at Bharatiya Vidya Bhavan’s Vidyashram, NIRD campus, Rajendranagar, Hyderabad. Nehwal has a brown belt in Karate. However, she quit Karate at the age of 8, when she was asked to have a motorcycle run over her stomach.[14] She practised Badminton in Badminton Court of Faculty Club of CCS HAU located in the University itself.

Saina Nehwal Badminton Career

Saina was the under 19 national champion. Saina created history by winning the prestigious Asian Satellite Badminton tournament twice, becoming the first player to do so.

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In 2006, Saina appeared on the global scene when she became the first Indian woman to win a 4 star tournament, the Philippines Open. Entering the tournament as the 86th seed, Saina went on to stun several top seeded players including the then world number four Xu Huaiwen before defeating Julia Wong Pei Xian of Malaysia for the title.

The same year Saina was also the runner up at the 2006 BWF World Junior Championships, where she lost a hard fought match against top seed Chinese Wang Yihan. She did one better in the 2008 by becoming the first Indian to win the World Junior Badminton Championships by defeating ninth seeded Japanese Sayaka Sato 21 – 9, 21 – 18.

She became the first Indian woman to reach the quarter finals at the Olympic Games when she upset world number five and fourth seed Wang Chen of Hong Kong in a three – game thriller. In the quarter – finals Saina lost a nail biting 3-gamer to world number 16 Maria Kristin Yulianti. In September 2008, she won the Yonex Chinese Taipei Open 2008 beating Lydia Cheah Li Ya of Malaysia 21 – 8 21 – 19. Maria Yulianti had earlier lost her quarter – final match to Pia Bernadet, Saina’s semi – final opponent, thus denying Saina a rematch.

Saina was named “The Most Promising Player” in 2008. She reached the world super series semifinals in the month of December 2008.

On 21 June, 2009, she became the first Indian to win a BWF Super Series title, the most prominent badminton series of the world by winning the Indonesia Open. She beat Chinese Wang Lin in the final 12 – 21, 21 – 18, 21 – 9. Saina on winning the tournament said, “I had been longing to win a super series tournament since my quarter final appearance at the Olympics”.

Saina is on the par with the likes of Prakash Padukone and her mentor Pullela Gopichand who both won the all England championships which are of similar status to the super series. In August 2009 she reached the quarterfinals of world championship losing to the second seed Lin Wang. Saina Nehwal was rewarded with Arjuna award in August, 2009 and her coach Gopichand was also rewarded with Dronacharya award at the same time.

Saina has been signed up by Olympic Gold Quest to support her in fulfilling her dream of winning the Olympic gold medal. Saina was awarded with Padma Shri award in January 2010. Saina is the brand ambassador of Deccan Chargers, an Indian Premier League team owned by Deccan Chronicle. She has also become one of the 8 brand ambassadors of 2010 Commonwealth Games held on New Delhi India.

Saina was awarded the highest national sporting award given to a player, The Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna award on 29th August, 2010.

On 20th June, 2010 Saina won the Singapore open super series, her second super series by defeating Tai Tzu – ying of Chinese taipei 21 – 18, 21 – 15 2010 Singapore Super Series

On 14th October, 2010 Saina won the gold medal against Wong Mew Choo of Malaysia 19 – 21, 23 – 21, 21 – 13 in CWG Delhi, thereby creating a monumental moment in India’s badminton history.

On 12th December, 2010 she won the Hong Kong super series defeating Wang Shixian of China 15 – 21, 21 – 16, 21 – 17. Saina Nehwal won 2010 Commonwealth games gold in the women’s singles badminton event held in the Siri Fort Auditorium, Delhi, on 14th October, 2010.

On 10th June, 2012 she won the Thailand Open Grand Prix Gold final defeating Ratchanok Inthanon in three sets.

On 17th June, 2012 she successfully reclaimed the Indonesian championship by beating Li Xuerui of China. It is her third Indonesian open title, having won it twice before in 2009 and 2010.

In London Olympics 2012 she created history as she became the first Indian ever to win an Olympic medal in badminton. Playing her bronze medal match against the World number 2 of China Wang Xin of China Saina ended on a winning note after her opponent conceded the match due to a knee injury after taking a 1 – 0 lead.

On 21st October, 2012 she became the second Indian to win the Denmark open by defeating Juliane Schenk of Germany. She defeated her opponent 21 – 17, 21 – 8 in around 35 minutes to complete her win. There were many Indian supporters in the crowd which loudly cheered her each and every point. She acknowledged their support by throwing two badminton rackets at them after her win. She thanked God and her fans for the win.

This was her fourth title of the year. This second Super Series Premier title fetched her USD 30,000 from a total purse of USD 400,000. The victory was sweet revenge for Saina who had lost in straight games to Schenk the previous year. Cricket legend Sachin Tendulkar presented a brand new BMW car to Saina Nehwal gifted by Andhra Badminton Association for winning a bronze medal at the London Olympics 2012.

Awards Won by Saina Nehwal

  • Arjuna Award (2009)
  • Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna ( 2009 – 2010 )
  • Padma Shri ( 2010 )

For the Bronze medal at the 2012 London Olympics

  • INR1 crore ( US$160,000 ) cash award from the Haryana Government.
  • INR50 lakh ( US$80,000 ) cash award from the Rajasthan Government.
  • INR50 lakh ( US$80,000 ) cash award from the Andhra Pradesh Government.
  • INR10 lakh ( US$16,000 ) cash award from the Badminton Association of India.
  • Honorary Doctorate Degree by Mangalayatan University.