- 5 new cities added to host regional matches: Chandigarh, Lucknow, Guwahati, Hyderabad and Chennai
- Matches to be held under 5 categories: new addition of U-17 for both boys and girls
- Strengthens CSR program: hosts training camps to identify potential talent among underprivileged children and coach them for participation
- Delhi leg received phenomenal response, over 1,150 registrations.
- Registrations more details on www.healthforhappiness.in
New Delhi, Nov. 23, 2015: PNB MetLife India, one of India’s leading life insurance companies, kick-starts the second season of its most awaited National Badminton Tournament- PNB MetLife Junior Badminton Championship (JBC) 2016. After scripting its unprecedented success in the first/ inaugural year with 24 winners undergoing rigorous training, the second season of the tournament promises much more excitement as it gets Bigger, Better and Beaming with Victory! The tournament is organized in association with Sara Foundation and supported and approved by Badminton Association of India (BAI).
The inaugural ceremony in Delhi was well attended by stalwarts with Mr. Dinesh Khanna, Arjuna awardee & former Asia champion as the Chief Guest. Ms Simran Handa, Sr. Executive Director, BAI graced the occasion as the Guest of Honour along with Mr. Hitesh Jain, Sr. Vice President, Delhi Capital Badminton Association.
Owing to the overwhelming response received for the first season, the cities to host regional matches identifying top shuttlers have been doubled with additions of Chandigarh, Lucknow, Guwahati, Hyderabad and Chennai along with New Delhi, Mumbai and Bangalore. Moreover, starting this season, a new category- U-17 has been introduced to PNB MetLife Junior Badminton Championship along with U-9, U-11, U-13 and U-15 for both- boys and girls. Every city will select top four kids from each category and they will qualify for grand finale.
Speaking on the occasion, Niraj Shah, Director Marketing, Strategy & Products, PNB MetLife, said, “We are delighted to announce the launch of PNB MetLife Junior Badminton Champion 2016 in association with Sara Foundation and CRY. As we embark on a new journey today to identify our next top 10 Badminton Stars of India, it is thrilling to see the initiative getting bigger and better with the addition of more cities and categories. We have also strengthened our CSR initiative through training and coaching camps, reinforcing our commitment to identify and nurture young talent, thereby popularizing Badminton by taking this truly to the grass root.”
In addition to the excitement of action packed head-to-head competition, PNB MetLife further extended its association with Child Rights & You (CRY) for identifying and training talented underprivileged children. This season PNB MetLife, in partnership with CRY, will conduct badminton camps across their various grass root projects in the country to train talented underprivileged children. As CRY is identifying the right talent to get them coached and trained in these camps, these bright young shuttlers will also participate in JBC 2016 for heads on competition to rise to the top and be among sixteen (16) winners for the coveted scholarships. The camps are being held in Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Hyderabad and Bangalore. Further, making it more exciting, the recipients of scholarships in the first season are also participating in PNB MetLife Junior Badminton Championship (JBC) 2016 to compete for renewing their grant.
With close to 900 applications for the first leg of the tournament in Delhi, the best and brightest young badminton champions will convene for the pinnacle of competition in their age groups.
Ashish Kumar, Director, Sara Foundation said, “We are excited with the encouraging response for the second season which is a testament to the tournament’s success and popularity of Badminton as a sport in India. With support from PNB MetLife, we are moving stronger in the direction to identify hidden talent out there and we will surely produce future badminton stars of India. Sara Foundation remains committed to promote sports and we are very excited to continue our journey with PNB MetLife.”
After Delhi, the league is set to get under way in Chandigarh, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore and Chennai, Guwahati. The feat would shift back to Thyagaraj stadium in Delhi for the semi-finals and finals starting March 30, 2016. Ten children and sixteen underprivileged children across different age-groups will win scholarships for training in a reputed Badminton Academy.