KATHMANDU, April 21: Nepali shuttlers Ratnajeet Tamang and Dipesh Dhami are set to take part in the Badminton Asia Championships 2017 to be held in China's Wuhan Province from April 25 to 30.
Nepal's number one Ratnajeet will take part in the men's singles category while number two Dipesh will compete in men's doubles event alongside Ratnajeet.
However, the Nepali players will have to play qualifying matches in order to book their places in the first round of the tournament. Ratnajeet who has been drawn in Group C of the qualifiers, will take on Singapore's Zin Rei Ryan Ng and Dmitriy Panarin of Kazakhstan. The winner of the group will book its place in the first round of the championship against Chou Tien Chen of Chinese Taipei.
Similarly, the pair of Ratnajeet and Dipesh will face Thai pair comprising of Tinn Isriyanet and Kittisak Namdesh in the qualifying round and the win will take them to the first round where they will face Japanese pair of Takeshi Kamura and Keigo Sonoda.
This is the third straight participation for Ratnajeet in the championship as he had participated in the men's singles in 2015 and 2016 editions held in the same city. Ratnajeet had reached the pre-quarterfinals in 2015 but crashed out from the first round in 2016.
“My primary target is to make it to the first round and for that I will have to top the group in qualifying round,” said Ratnajeet.
National Sports Council (NSC)'s Member Secretary Keshav Kumar Bista, Nepal Badminton Association (NBA)'s President Ramji Bahadur Shrestha among others bade farewell to the Wuhan-bound team in the capital on Friday. Players will leave for Wuhan on Sunday.