Over 70 foreign shuttlers, up from 25 entries in the previous year, will take part in the $15,000 Tata Open India International Challenge 2011 to be held at the NSCI courts in Worli from December 14-18.
The top attractions among them are women's world no. 19 Eriko Hirose of Japan who is seeded No. 1 and men's top seed Alamsyuah Yunis from Indonesia, currently ranked No. 26 in the world.
According to badminton legend Prakash Padukone, whose academy is organising the event in conjunction with the state body MBA, shuttlers can earn valuable points that would be counted for the world rankings ahead of next year's Olympics.
"I am delighted with the response for the event. As compared to last year when there were 25 foreign entries this year we have 75 and the bulk of them are from badminton powerhouses Indonesia (24) and Malaysia (18)," Prakash said.
"This is one of the tournaments for earning Olympic qualifying points that can be earned till April 30 next year. Points secured in the tournament will be counted for world ranking that will ultimately decide the Olympic qualifying points," he added.
India's Guru Sai Dutt, World No. 47, is the man drawn to meet the Indonesian top seed in the final on December 18 while P V Sindhu, ranked 42nd in the world, is the No. 2 seed in the women's section with Hong Kong's Chan Tsz Ka, ranked one place below the Indian.
The first day is reserved for qualifying round matches and the main draw play commences on December 15.
The men's and women's singles winners would be richer by $ 1,125 while the runners-up would earn $ 570 each.
The seedings are as follows:
Men's singles (Draw of 32): 1. Alamsyah Yunus (Ina), 2. R M V Guru Sai Dutt (Ind), 3. Arvind Bhat (Ind), 4. Anand Pawar, 5. Andre Kuniawan Tedjono (Ina), 6. Sourabh Varma (Ind), 7. Stanislav Pukhov (Rus), 8. Anup Sridhar (Ind).
Women's singles (Draw of 32): 1. Eriko Hirose (Jpn), 2. P V Sindhu (Ind), 3. Chan Tsz Ka (Hkg), 4. Arundati Panthawane (Ind), 5. Claudia Mayer (Aut), 6. Aditi Mutatkar (Ind), 7. P C Thulasi (Ind), 8. Sayali Gokhale (Ind).
Men's doubles (Draw of 16): K T Rupesh Kumar and Sanave Thomas (Ind), 2. Ross Smith and Glenn Warf (Aus), 3. Bang Duc Bai and Manh Thang Dao (Vie), 4. Andri Adistia and Christopher Rusdianto (Ina).
Women's doubles (Draw of 8): 1. Della Destiara Haris and Andini Suci Rizky (Ina), 2. Imawan Gebby and Ristiyani (Ina).
Mixed doubles (Draw of 16): 1. Wong Wai Hong and Chau Hoi Wah (Hkg), 2. Aik Quan Tan and Pei Jing Lai (Mas), 3. Arun Vishnu and Aparna Balan (Ind), 4. Fadhilah Irfan and Anggraini Weni (Ina).