Reigning men's and women's world champions Pramod Bhagat and Manasi Joshi will spearhead India's challenge at the third Dubai Para Badminton International Championships that gets underway in Dubai from Tuesday.
Bhagat and Joshi, both SL3 players, will lead a 26-strong Indian team, the biggest contingent in the tournament. SL3 players could have impairment in one or both legs and poor walking/running balance. They must play standing.
Other top players in the team include two-time Asian Para Games champion Parul Parmar, 2019 World Championships bronze medallists Sukant Kadam, Manoj Kumar and Krishna Nagar, besides promising players like Palak Kohli among others.
This will be the first BWF Para Badminton tournament in more than a year after the COVID-19 Pandemic. The last international meet was held in Peru in February 2020.
As many as 127 players from 29 countries, including hosts United Arab Emirates, have confirmed their participation at the March 30-April 4 championships.
Several world champions, including Indonesia's top players Leani Ratri Oktila, Suryo Nugroho and Dheva Anrimusthi, France's Lucas Mazur, Malaysia's Cheah Like Hou among others will be seen in action.
Teams from Kuwait, Maldives and Nepal are set to compete for the first time.