Mumbai: Saturday was one of Saina Nehwal’s highest pay-days, as she won US$ 10,000 for her semi-final appearance at the world’s richest badminton tournament—the US$ 5,00,000 World Super Series Masters. When she’ll actually see the money is far from certain though.
Saina went down 21-15, 14-21, 21-16 to Chen Wang of Hong Kong in the semi-final on Saturday. Ironically though, for the 18-year-old, the brightest patch of her booming career this year has not quite been reflecting in her bank statements. Beyond the giant presentation cheques at glitzy functions, accolades and encouraging speeches, are the perplexing delays in receiving the prize money India’s top shuttler has accumulated over this breakthrough season.
Prize money won in international badminton events are always routed through the national association—in this case, the Badminton Association of India. As far as the procedure goes, the treasurer of the association informs the secretary once the money has been received from the organisers, who in turn informs the individual player, before the payments are delivered through DDs via speedpost. The entire procedure could take two months or more. Saina, though, hasn’t received any payments in the last six months.