More heat for Pullela Gopichand!

Published: Dec 12, 2012, 07:22 IST | Rohan Koli |

Former India badminton ace Prakash Padukone yesterday supported the Bombay High Court's observation that it is legally wrong for a national coach like Pullela Gopichand to run a private academy in Hyderabad

Padukone however, also supported the former All England champion, saying he has produced some good results for the country.

Former All England champion Prakash Padukone at the announcement of the Tata Open Badminton Challenge at CCI yesterday. Pic/ Atul Kamble

“I welcome the court’s observation. Ethically, it is not correct for a national coach to run a private academy, but we should not forget what Gopichand has done for Indian badminton. He is a competent coach and has produced some very good results. The only solution I feel now is that the Badminton Association of India (BAI) should come up with a strong selection panel without any bias,” Padukone, India’s first All England Champion said yesterday during the launch of the fifth edition of the Tata Open India International Badminton Challenge. The tournament, being organised by the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy under the auspices of the Maharashtra Badminton Association, will take place at the Cricket Club of India (Dec 12-16).

India coach P Gopichand

Last month shuttler Prajakta Sawant had accused coach Gopichand of “mental harassment” and filed a petition in the Bombay High Court after she was not allowed to participate in the national camp. The problem reportedly started when the 20-year-old asked Gopichand to change her partners (both in women's doubles and mixed doubles) for the training camp, which was to be held from October 4 to December 12 in Hyderabad. Prajakta claimed that Gopichand thereafter did not allow her to join the camp, following which she moved court and got a judgement in her favour on November 6. The matter will come up for hearing on December 19.

On Monday, India’s star doubles player Jwala Gutta also spoke in agreement of the Bombay High Court’s observation, claiming that only those players, who trained at Gopichand's academy were being picked for tournaments. 

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