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‘Trump Match’ will be a big challenge for coaches: Srikanth

Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth on Tuesday said the new rule of ‘Trump Match’, introduced in the second edition of Premier Badminton League (PBL), will be a big challenge for coaches as it could make or break the fortunes of the teams.

“We have never done these kind of things and obviously it (The Trump Match) is exciting. There will be a lot of strategy involved in it. I think it is a very big job and a challenge for any coach,” he said here after the launch of Bengaluru Top Guns team.

A team winning the ‘Trump Match’, after selecting one of the five matches in a tie, would fetch them a bonus point and a negative point in case of defeat.

Bengaluru Top Guns coach Arvind Bhat admitted that the rule will throw a big challenge for the coach.

“The rule will throw a big challenge before the coach, and he has to take the right decision on it, so that the team gains bonus points rather than losing points and eventually losing the tie from a winning position, in rare cases,” Bhat said.

Bhat added: The new rule involves lot of strategising which can play a vital role in some crunch matches, which will have an effect on the entire tournament. “I think it is a very strategic thing, but at the same time it can play a very crucial role in some matches that will have cascading effect on the League,” he said.

As per the ‘Trump Match’ rules, both teams will specify which of the five matches will be their respective Trump Match along with the list of players at least one hour before the start of the tie with the referee. In a Trump Match, the team calling for the Trump gets 2 points for win and -1 points for loss. However, the other team will play this match as a normal one. If both the teams place the trump on the same match, then for both of them +2 or -1 scoring will apply for win or loss respectively. Ace Indian women’s doubles shuttler Ashwini Ponnappa said the Trump Match is an exciting rule because a winning team could eventually turn out to be losers. “The rule is exciting because anything can happen - you could still lose if you lose your Trump Match. So, that puts lot of pressure on players. It is a wonderful idea ... it will be pretty nerve-wracking for people to watch as well,” she said.

India’s chief national coach Pullela Gopichand said Trump Match is a fantastic idea as it will keep spectators, viewers and players glued to the matches.

“What it basically does is, if the tie is 3-0 up, teams can actually lose last two matches and lose the tie. So, basically every match is going down to the wire,” he said. 
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