It's not Jwala Gutta's fault alone: Prajakta Sawant

Krrish Delhi Smashers’ Prajakta Sawant has come out in support of India’s doubles specialist Jwala Gutta after the disciplinary committee of the Badminton Association of India (BAI) on Saturday recommended a life ban for Gutta over her conduct during an Indian Badminton League (IBL) match against Banga Beats on August 25.

KrJwala Gutta and Prajakta Sawant
Krrish Delhi Smashers’ Jwala Gutta cheers her team during the Indian Badminton League in August and (inset) Prajakta Sawant

Smashers’ icon player Gutta threatened to forfeit their last league tie in Bangalore when they were informed that Denmark’s Jan Jorgensen will be replacing the injured Hu Yun of Hong Kong at the last minute.

“We were surprised to see Jan coming in to replace Hu Yun. We were not happy with Bangalore’s decision of replacing this player at the last minute and hence we all (as a team) decided to lodge a protest. The whole team was asked to sign the protest letter. The entire team protested, so it’s not Jwala’s fault alone,” said the 20-year-old.

Prajakta felt the life ban on an international player is not appropriate. “Banning an international player is a big loss for the country. Let’s not forget, she has won some major titles and a historic World Championship medal for India,” added Prajakta.¬†Jwala was issued a 14-day showcause notice by BAI and was asked to explain her conduct last month.

“We have recommended a life ban on Jwala for her role in that tie. Nowhere in Jwala’s reply, which she sent to us, is she apologetic for her conduct. So, we recommended the ban on her. However, if she unconditionally apologises to the president, she can be pardoned. It is upto the president’s discretion now,” BAI’s disciplinary committee chairman S Muralidharan was quoted as saying by IANS.

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