Two badminton players from Guwahati, Debahuti Lahon and Maini Boruah have won the third edition of the Red Bull Shuttle Up competition held in Delhi.
The pair defeated Delhi's city winners, Sana Verma and Ekta Joshi in the finals, 11-8, 11-10, in straight sets. Earlier, qualifying rounds were held across five cities with the city winners facing in the final event in Delhi's Thyagaraj Sports Complex.
The five cities where the qualifying events were held are – Hyderabad, Mumbai, Chandigarh, Delhi and Guwahati. The winning pairs from each city were – Afnan Zareen and Arun Komal, Shubhangi Majumder and Ramsha Farooqui, Nalini Malik and Khushboo Shah, Sana Verma and Ekta Joshi and Debahuti Lahon and Maini Boruah respectively.
The winning duo from Guwahati, Debahuti, and Maini has a whole host of individual honours to their name. Maini Boruah was a part of the team that won bronze at the Senior National Badminton Championship in 2019. In the North East Zonals Championship in 2019, she was U-19 doubles champion and mixed doubles silver medalist.
On the other hand, Debahuti Lahon was a school national champion. She was also third-ranked in all India doubles ranking in 2019.
Red Bull athlete and Indian Women's Doubles shuttler Ashwini Ponaappa said, "It is very encouraging to see so many talented women badminton players being part of the Red Bull Shuttle Up National Finals. It's been a great journey with Red Bull Shuttle Up and I only see it growing in the years to come".
The winning duo, Debahuti, and Maini said, "We are delighted to win the Red Bull Shuttle Up National Finals. We prepared really well for this tournament. It is always a great experience to play against the best teams in the country and do well. It is great to see brands like Red Bull supporting aspiring women badminton players like ourselves and giving us the platform to showcase our talents".
The Red Bull Shuttle Up competition is an exclusive women's doubles event for women above 16 years of age. All matches are played on a knockout basis with 3 sets in each game.
Interestingly, each team can call for a super point by informing the match referee where they can get 2 points for winning that particular point. No points are deducted if they fail to win.