Disqualifications Rock Badminton Tournament
The disqualification of eight women badminton players from the London Olympics for ‘throwing’ their matches to secure a more favorable draw sent shockwaves through the tournament on Wednesday, and prompted cries of injustice from team officials.
The Badminton World Federation (BWF) said it had expelled four women’s doubles pairs from the Chinese, South Korean and Indonesian teams after they had deliberately played to lose their matches in Tuesday’s evening session, provoking jeers from the crowd at Wembley Arena .
The decision knocked out China’s world champion pair of Yu Yang and Wang Xiaoli along with South Korean pairs Jung Kyung-eun and Kim Ha-na, and Ha Jung-eun and Kim Min-jung.
Indonesia’s Greysia Polii and Meiliana Jauhari were also expelled for their involvement in the tainted matches on Tuesday.
Spectators booed as shuttlecocks were deliberately hit out of court, and serves dumped into the net.
A BWF panel issued the decision after a hearing on Wednesday where charges of “not using one’s best efforts to win a match” and “conducting oneself in a manner that is clearly abusive or detrimental to the sport” were brought against the players.
Both the Indonesian and South Korean teams were appealing. China, blamed by the South Korean team as the instigator of Tuesday’s farce, made no comment.
“We come here not to lose medals, we want to have medals,” the head of the Indonesian Badminton Association Erick Thohir said.
“There is no direction from the Indonesian Badminton Association to tell the players to lose. I think to blame China is also not fair.
“I think the BWF (Badminton Wold Federation) should take a look at the history of the last tournaments before they make judgments.”