New Delhi, April 12: Premier Indian shuttler Kidambi Srikanth heaped praise on his coach Pullela Gopichand to guide his through his career after he clinched the top spot in the BWF men’s ranking. The Guntur shuttler also thanked his shuttlers for being a part of his journey throughout his thick and thin.

“Absolutely thrilled to be WORLD NO.1. I would like to thank my coach Gopi sir for believing in me and my support staff for always taking care of me,” Kidambi Srikanth tweeted.

Earlier, Srikanth rose to world number 1 in the Badminton World Federation (BWF) rankings. He replaced Denmark’s Viktor Axelsen to clinch the spot. Srikanth moved to the top of rankings with 76,895 points in men’s singles category.

Axelsen, who could not defend his Malaysian Open title, lost at least 1,660 points and gave away the world number 1 ranking to Kidambi.

The 25-year-old is only the second Indian after Saina Nehwal, who achieved the feat in 2015, to top the rankings and the first Indian male to do so.

Last year, the Indian shuttler won four Super Series titles – Indonesia, Australia, Denmark, and France — becoming only the fourth in the world to achieve the feat. He, however, missed the chance to become world number 1 because of injury.

Notably, Badminton rankings are calculated for a period of 52 weeks wherein, the rankings points from the 10 best tournaments are taken into consideration.