Indian badminton star PV Sindhu will be defending her World Championships crown next year after the Badminton World Federation (BWF) on Friday rescheduled the event from August 2021 to the end of the year.
The BWF World Championships will now be held in Huelva, Spain at the Carolina Marin stadium from November 29-December 5, 2021; and it represents the first time that the tournament will be held in the same year as the Olympics.
The change in schedule was necessitated by the International Olympic Committee (IOC)’s decision to postpone the Tokyo Olympics to July-August next year due to the coronavirus pandemic.
“The move allows both the Olympic badminton competition and the World Championships to be conducted with equal fairness for everyone,” BWF President Poul-Erik Hoyer said in the official statement.
“We are satisfied that moving the championships to the end of the year will allow us to deliver the best tournament possible,” added David Cabello, the President of the Spanish Badminton Federation.
Two-year reign for PV Sindhu
It was initially understood that the BWF World Championships would not be held next year considering it is never held in an Olympic year and PV Sindhu would get to keep her crown till 2022.
However, this development means that the Indian badminton star will have to bring out all the stops if she is to achieve both the Olympic gold and defend her world title in the same year.
PV Sindhu had become the first Indian badminton player to win the BWF World Championships last year after she beat Nozomi Okuhara in the finals in Basel.
When the tournament rolls around in 2021, PV Sindhu could join Han Aiping, Ye Zhaoying, Xie Xingfang and home favourite Carolina Marin as the only women to win successive golds at the BWF World Championships.