Olympic badminton players disqualified for deliberate poor play

| August 2nd, 2012

The following is a guest post by Lisa Xu via The Hopewell Journal

20120802-batminton-01

Eight badminton players have been disqualified from the women’s doubles competition at the London Olympic Games for deliberately playing poorly in Tuesday’s matches.

Two pairs from South Korea, and one each from Indonesia and China, including World Champions and top seeds Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli from China, were accused of “not using best efforts” in an attempt to manipulate the draw for the knockout stage.

In the women’s doubles match at Wembley Arena on Tuesday night, China’s Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli and South Koreans Jung Kyung-eun and Kim Ha-na performed poorly, deliberately serving into the net and hitting shots out of bound.

Match referee Thorsten Berg appeared on court at one point to warn players that they faced punishment if they didn’t compete properly. Fans jeered and booed throughout the match to show their disappointment.

Both pairs knew the winners would face China’s Tian Qing and Zhao Yunlei. By losing to the Korean pair, Yu and Wang would only meet their Chinese teammates if both pairs make it to the final.

A later match between the South Korean pair of Ha Jung-Eun and Kim Min-Jung and the Indonesian pair Meiliana Juahari and Greysia Polii was played out in a similar manner, where both pairs played badly, clearly playing to lose.

China’s Olympic sports delegation has begun an investigation into the matches, state media reported. The delegation expressed its support for the Badminton World Federation decision to disqualify Yu and Wang, and issued a statement in which it condemned the un-sportsman like behaviors exhibited by Yu and Wang in Tuesday’s competition.

This is not the first time the Chinese badminton team has been accused of trying to manipulate the system to its advantage. In April this year, Lin Dan, China’s top ranked player, withdrew from the semi-final at the Badminton Asia Championships, so that his teammate Chen Jin, could advance into the final.

By helping Chen improve his world ranking, the Chinese badminton team could ensure that it would gain three spots for the men’s single event at the London Olympics.

In badminton and table tennis, most Chinese players are accustomed to letting their coaches decide how to play each match, including whether to let their teammates win to maximize medal count for China in international competitions.

Chinese athletes usually do not go against their coaches’ directives, and in this case, both Yu and Wang are also victims of the Chinese tradition of placing a team’s interests over those of the individual players.

Sources in Chinese:

Xinhuan: Chinese pair disqualified for not playing their best
Sina: Chinese Olympic delegation expressed its support for the Badminton World Federation decision to disqualify Yu and Wang
China.com.cn: Lin Dan withdrew to let Chen Jin advance into semi-final

8 Comments | Leave a comment | Comment feed

  1. ddc29 says:

    When Chinese Player get Gold in Swim, British news doubt he/she must taking drug, without evidence.
    When Chinese Player get equal 2nd postion, they put Chinese National flag under other nation’s flag
    When Chinese Player get lose, they disqualify Chinese poor players.
    When their Player get nothing, they have to delete the List of Counties by Gold from their website.

    Such funny,they get NOTHING to compare !!! NOBODY to compete, and these losers always feel jealous about winner and talk all the bullshits

    • Lao Wei in Shanghai says:

      Regarding Ye Shiwen, when I look on the news coverage it seems like most are saying she was treated unfairly. A couple of individuals made comments, they gave their opinions, that is hardly the UK as a whole attacking China. It is unfair what happened to her. A recent poll by a UK newspaper resulted in 98% of voters agreeing she was treated badly by the accusations made. The main accusation made was by 1 man, who has some sort of position. Every official body has been behind Ye Shiwen and rubbished the accusations. There is free speech in the UK, not everyone will agree with your point of view, that’s life.

      Regarding the flag, I’m sorry that is really blown out of all proportions, it is nothing and there was no way that was some sort of dig at China.

      It wasn’t only Chinese that were disqualified in the badminton. There were 2 teams of South Koreans, 1 team from Indonesia and 1 team from China disqualified. How exactly is that singling out China? From what I can see all the teams that were disqualified were warned about their behavior, they ignored the warnings and were then disqualified. They should not have been so arrogant to ignore the warnings of the referee and think they are above the rules.

      What is it with some Chinese obsessed that the whole world has it in for them. Focus on the good stuff not trying to find the bad stuff. China has done very well in many ways, be proud of that, if someone says something you don’t like, so what, focusing on it and demanding apologies and retribution, just makes you look stupid.

      The UK are now 5th place in the medal rankings. For a relatively small Country with a population in the region of 60m and where most sportsmen and women have to work whilst trying to do their chosen sports, I don’t think that is particularly bad. China has 1.3 billion people to choose from, more than 20 times the population of the UK. Chinese children are picked out at a young age and focus on nothing else for their entire life except sports, they are fully supported by the government and given opportunities they would never have had without sports success. The UK should be and are proud of their successes, so should China.

    • jon says:

      she used doping.

      case closed.

      • Matt says:

        You’re wrong. Case closed.

        Swimmer improves her swimming performance by 1.8% (5 seconds improvement on a time of 4m 28s) between the ages 14 and 16 and you automatically say she used doping, even though she has been tested twice.

        You’re an idiot.

  2. white dude says:

    it sucks for those people who paid thousands of dollars to watch them
    instead teams are fucking around on a game that happen only every 4 years

    • voiceofhomer says:

      “I just crashed, I did it on purpose to get a restart, just to have the fastest ride. I did it. So it was all planned, really,” Hindes reportedly said immediately after the race. He modified his comments at the official news conference to say he lost control of his bike.

      IOC spokesman Mark Adams said it agreed with the International Cycling Union that “the result is not in question.”
      ——————————————————–Loving it————————-

  3. RyanO says:

    It is ridiculous to condemn the players for what they did. No one cares if you win a seeding round; the goal is to win the MEDAL. And if the multi-round competition is structured to reward failure, then the strategic play is to fail. The players recognized this, and acted accordingly. What folks should focus on is that the round-robin play was introduced to ensure there were more matches, just as with other professional sports (think soccer), in order to enhance revenues from additional coverage and ticket sales. The officials writing the format had an opportunity to decide on a format that maximized the reward for best effort, or a format that maximized revenue. They chose the latter.

    One can hardly fault the players – for whom the goal is the MEDAL – for playing in the manner that the tournament format rewards. The only scandal here is the relentless quest to increase revenues (regardless of what that does to the integrity of the games) and the subsequent decision to use the players as a scapegoat.

  4. Wuleye says:

    Hey Jon. Think about it. If China has doping which cannot be find out by investigation. It must be used in Chinese football first. Also, Micheal should used some doping as well. Haha 8 gold medal in Beijing, how did it come to this.

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