Meet Anmol Kharb: Giantkiller, Rockstar With Nerves Of Steel & The Rising Star Of Indian Badminton

Anmol Kharb is a fearless and intelligent player, and her emergence is refreshing for Indian badminton, India's chief National coach, Pullela Gopichand, had said after the teenager's impressive show at the Badminton Asian Team Championships.
Meet Anmol Kharb: Giantkiller, Rockstar With Nerves Of Steel & The Rising Star Of Indian Badminton

Anmol Kharb. (Screengrab/X)

Anmol Kharb, the rising star of Indian badminton, won the decisive fifth rubber to lead Indian women to a historic Badminton Asia Team Championships title with a tight 3-2 victory over Thailand on Sunday. The 17-year-old youngster, who hails from Faridabad, in the National Capital Region, shouldered the responsibility of taking India through, and she did that with a dominating 21-14 21-9 victory over Pornpicha Choeikeewong in the deciding third singles.
Often compared to her idol, Sania Nehwal, Anmol has been touted as a fearless and intelligent player. She is also known to be excellent with her footwork, and lateral movement.
Rising up the ranks, she made a name for herself as a giant killer and won the senior national championship in December 2023. In 2019, at just 12 years old, Kharb won her first U17 All India Ranking title in Hyderabad.
However, she took up the sport at the tender age of six after watching her brother Hardik play. Interestingly, she began as a speed skater. But when Anmol shifted to the Sunrise Shuttlers Academy in Noida from Faridabad, it was her mother, Rajbala, who remained a constant pillar of support. Her father, Devender Kharb, is a lawyer and a former kabaddi player.
Another interesting aspect is that she trains under none other than Kusumm Singh, once a competitor of Saina and Ashwini during her days.
In the Badminton Asia Team Championships 2024 finale, Anmol, the reigning national champion, beat world no 45, world number 29 and world number 149. In the final, Anmol, ranked 472, stunned the world number 45 Choeikeewong 21-14, 21-9 to win the game for her country.
What makes her feat even more impressive is that this is Anmol's maiden senior event, and she has already won against top-quality players.
How Anmol pulled it off in the final?
Playing the decider for the third time in the competition, Anmol recovered from a 3-6 deficit to grab a slender 11-10 advantage at the break.
Anmol's ability to patiently construct the rallies and produce winners helped her as she lead 17-13 at one stage.
The Indian made her opponent twist and turn with her angled returns to gain six game points and sealed it comfortably when Pornpicha sprayed into the net.
Anmol continued in the same vein in the second game, moving from 6-5 to 11-5 in a jiffy.
A series of down-the-line smashes took Anmol one point away from win. She grabbed 12 match points with another precise return which touched the net tape and then the Thai went long again as it was all over.
(With PTI inputs)
End of Article
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