Pullela Gopichand was born on 16 November 1973 to Pullela Subash Chandra and Subbaravamma at Nagandla, Prakasam district, Andhra Pradesh. Initially, he was interested in playing cricket, but his elder brother encouraged him to take up badminton instead. He did his schooling from St.Paul's High School, Hyderguda, Hyderabad. He joined A.V. College, Hyderabad and graduated in public administration. He was the captain of the Indian combined universities badminton team in 1990 and 1991.

Gopichand was coached by S.M.Arif before Prakash Padukone accepted him at Prakash Padukone academy. He also trained under Ganguly Prasad at the SAI Bangalore. Gopichand won his first National Badminton Championship title in 1996, and went on to win the title five times in a row, until 2000. He won two gold and one silver at the Indian national games, 1998 held at Imphal. At the international level, he represented India in 3 Thomas Cup tournaments. In 1996 he won a gold in the SAARC badminton tournament at Vijayawada and defended the crown in the next games held at Colombo in 1997. At the 1998 Commonwealth Games, he won a silver in the team event and a bronze in men's singles. In 1999, he won the Toulouze open championship in France and the Scottish open championship in Scotland. He also emerged winner at the Asian satellite tournament held at Hyderabad in the same year, and lost in the final match of the German grand prix championship.

In 2001, he won the prestigious All England Open Badminton Championships at Birmingham. He defeated then world number one Peter Gade in the semi finals before defeating Chen Hong of China to lift the trophy. He became the second Indian to achieve the feat after Prakash Padukone, who won in 1980.

Gopichand founded the Gopichand badminton academy, a badminton training facility in Hyderabad, India. The facility trains several Indian badminton players including Saina Nehwal, Srikanth Kidambi, Parupalli Kashyap, P.V.Sindhu, Gurusai Datt and Tarun Kona.

Awards and honours
  • Arjuna Award, 1999
  • Gandhi Khel Ratna, 2001
  • Padma Shri, 2005
  • Dronacharya Award, 2009
  • Padma Bhushan, 2014


Gopichand Badminton Academy is a badminton training facility in Hyderabad, India. Founded by the 2001 All England Open Badminton Champion, Pullela Gopichand, the facility trains several badminton players such as Saina Nehwal,Parupalli Kashyap, P.V.Sindhu, Arundhati Pantawane, Gurusai Datt, Srikanth Kidambi etc..


PGBA have recently started their unit in salem, Tamilnadu. The best performing players of Salem Academy will be imparted specialized training at the head quarters in Hyderabad.