It’s been a giddy few days in the Sen family ever since their just-turned 21-year-old son, Lakshya, etched history at the Birmingham Commonwealth Games 2022 by winning gold in the men’s singles event after a heroic display against in-form Malaysian’s Ng Tze Yong at the NEC Arena.
Storming off to win gold on his debut at the Commonwealth Games at such a young age? Few could have believed that to be possible but for Lakshya Sen, rewriting the impossible seems to be topping his list, as he has just about gone about ticking things off the bucket list, recording some noteworthy wins and winning medals galore in the process.
Delighted as ever with the ripples his son, Lakshya, is making on the global stage, The Bridge caught up with DK Sen, Lakshya’s father and also a badminton coach with the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy (PPBA) in Bengaluru, ahead of Lakshya’s next-big campaign at the upcoming BWF Badminton World Championships in Tokyo from 22nd August 2022.
“It’s been a great few days. We watched Lakshya’s matches together at the Academy, all of us gathered around, it was a very special moment,” DK Sen, proudly recalls, currently in Dehradun, where he is attending the Badminton State Championships of Uttarkhand.
“The Malaysian (Ng Tze Yong, who defeated Kidambi Srikanth twice at the CWG) was playing well and it was a rather difficult final clash but we were so happy to see Lakshya pull through and win gold for the nation,” he beamed.
Onto a second World Championships medal?
Having also had his 21st birthday soon after this win, Lakshya and his family spent some quality time in Bengaluru, celebrating this rave victory, with near and dear ones, before his time to leave for the next-big assignment – the BWF World Championships came along.
“The draw is tricky this time. All three – Lakshya, HS Prannoy and Kidambi Srikanth are in the same draw…which makes things really difficult. Only one of them can reach the quarters, which means, only one can medal at the event.”
“This is rather sad only because ultimately, India ka hi nuksaan hai, na?”
“But that said since Lakshya won a bronze at the World Championships last time and the gold from the Commonwealth Games has added a fresh boost to his confidence, he will be a great medal contender in Tokyo, this time, as well,” his father-coach firmly asserted.
“Moreover, he has the momentum on his side and that should hopefully, work out for him,” he continued.
Fair enough, Lakshya has looked in fine form throughout the CWG and was pretty spot-on against most of his opponents, making his case for the BWF World Championships stronger than ever.
“But it’s still sports so it will all come down to who delivers on that day and with Srikanth, and Prannoy, also in the mix, we can never be sure,” DK Sen, says with a chuckle.
Lakshya Sen will be opening his campaign at the BWF World Championships against Danish veteran Hans-Kristian Solberg Vittinghus on 22nd August, Monday.