Banga Beats bought Parupalli Kashyap as their icon player but chief coach U Vimal Kumar feels even Ashwini Ponnappa would have been a good choice as being a local star she could have added value to the Bangalore side in the upcoming Indian Badminton League (IBL).
"It (giving a miss to Ashwini) wasn't painful, but her inclusion in our team could have added value. Afer all, she is a local player," Vimal said here.
Vimal, a former national coach and currently chief coach at the Prakash Padukone Badminton Academy, said since Bangalore had already bought Kashyap as an icon player, the team had to give a miss to Ashwini.
"Norms under the bidding process did not allow us to go for another icon player. Until yesterday I heard Kashyap preferring to play for Hyderabad, but was picked to play for Banga Beats. That's how it is. We have to learn to live with it," he said.
Ashwini went to Pune Pistons at USD 25,000 after her base price was reduced from USD 50,000 to USD 25,000 following a meeting of all the franchises at the last moment.
Vimal, also a former national champion and 1992 Olympian, was impressed with his franchise owners for their involvement and the homework they had done on some of the international players.
"My colleagues Balachandran and Vijay Lancy did a lot of homework and had strategies for all icon players which made for an exciting auction," he said.
Banga Beats begin their IBL campaign on August 15 against the Lee Chong Wei led Mumbai Masters in the Delhi leg of the event while their only match at home will be on August 25 against Krrish Delhi Smashers.