The Highs and Lows of Jwala Gutta’s Career

Jwala Gutta, an International doubles badminton player, and two times Olympian is one of the most decorated players of her time. Well, she is one of the most prominent doubles players of India who has helped to increase the importance of doubles recognition in India. Apart from a 2010 Commonwealth gold medal, Jwala Gutta has won bronze at the 2011 BWF World Championships, and a bronze at the 2014 Badminton Asia Championships.

Jwala has been credited to bring worldwide recognition with respect to doubles in India. First, she achieved her highest rank of World no. 6 in mixed doubles with partner, Diju in 2010 and later she achieved a World no. 10 rank in Women’s doubles with partner, Ashwini Ponappa in 2015.
To date, no mixed doubles and women’s doubles pair in India have achieved a higher rank than what Gutta achieved.

The 36-year-old left-hander has amassed a total of 316 wins in singles, doubles, and mixed doubles on the BWF tour. Apart from her sporting achievements, Gutta has been vociferous to issues ranging from fair treatment in sports, health, education, women’s empowerment, and gender equality.

Three months after the 2016 Rio Olympics, Jwala and Ashwini parted ways reasoning that they were not going as a pair. The decision of parting ways was mutual by both of them. This was the second time that the duo parted ways, the first being in 2013. Eventually, Ashwini paired up with Sikki Reddy and Jwala starting focusing on mixed doubles with partner, Manu Attri. They played only one tournament together at the Malaysia Masters where they crashed out in the pre-quarterfinals.

However, Jwala has been on a sabbatical since 2017. She became a member of SAI and has also opened up her own academy i.e. The Global Academy for Badminton in Hyderabad in which Jwala’s coach, M Arif, popularly known as Arif Saahab will lead the training and mentorship of all the students.

Jwala has always advocated people about promoting doubles, educating people, and media to increase awareness of doubles in India. The Arjuna Awardee has created a benchmark for doubles in India and is working to develop the doubles aspect of badminton in the country.

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