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VIKTOR AXELSEN KING O F THE BADMINTON WORLD

M EE T T H E STO E VA S

TOKYO 2020 PARALYMPIC GAMES Issue 26, December 2017

FABIEN N E DE P R E Z Badminton player in army gear

A LEGE N D STEPS DO WN

www.badmintoneurope.com


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ED IT OR I A L

2017 has almost come to an end, and it has truly been a great year for European badminton and for Badminton Europe. 2017 stands out as Badminton Europe celebrated its 50th Anniversary. This Anniversary was duly marked at our Annual Delegates’ Meeting in Prague in April where the stalwarts of the past were honoured and the Anniversary Book was revealed. Looking ahead it is a personal satisfaction for me that we managed to get the European Centre of Excellence off the ground in Holbæk, Denmark. The Training Centre is by far the biggest development project in the history of Badminton Europe and it is very striking that it coincides with our 50th Anniversary. You will see the Centre of Excellence mentioned several places in the magazine and I do see this project as a cornerstone in the development of badminton in Europe. I am pleased that this edition of the Magazine features an interview with the person that has been instrumental in developing badminton in his own country Bulgaria and in the Balkan Region. Professor Doctor Puzant Kassabian will give you some insight in his long career in badminton and also reveals what the future has in store for him. Again in 2017 the stars of European badminton have shown all of us, that players from Europe can compete with the rest of the world and be successful. Big titles and medals have been won on Super Series level, at the World Championships and also at the Para-badminton tournaments. Finally, I would like to mention my good friend and mentor Tom Bacher who passed away recently. His passion and contribution to badminton in Europe and worldwide will not be forgotten. On a more cheerful note, thank you very much for being part of the European badminton community. I wish you all a happy New Year, and I hope you will enjoy reading this issue of the BEC Magazine. All the best

Brian Agerbak General Secretary

Imprint: Badminton Europe – Published by Badminton Europe Confederation, Brøndbytoften 14, 2605 Brøndby, Denmark.  ·  Responsible editor: Rasmus Bech Design: Julian Pletz, www.julianpletz.de  ·  Coverphoto: BadmintonPhoto  ·  Photos: Mark Phelan and BadmintonPhoto

BADMINTON EUROPE

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8 THE EUROPEAN STARS ON THE BWF WORLD RANKING

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W OR L D RANK I NG

MEET THE STOEVAS IN TERVIEW

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VIKTOR AXELSEN – LIGHTNING THE WAY FOR EUROPE

WHEN „ABROAD“ BECOMES HOME

THE POLITICIAN

P ORTR AI T

PORTRA IT

IN TERVIEW

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CON T E N T

52 FABIENNE DEPREZ – SPORT SOLDIER INTERVIEW

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THE PARALYMPIC DEBUT

TOURNAMENT CALENDAR

PAR A- B A D M I NTO N

2018

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ADCOCKS – BUILDING A BRAND

A LEGEND RETIRES

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P ORT RAI T

INTERVIEW

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WORLD

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IN PI C T U R E S

CHAMPIONSHIPS 2017

That moment when you know you are better than the rest BADMINTON EUROPE

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BWF EUROPEAN WORLD RANKINGS MIXED DOUBLES

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8

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ZHENG SIWEI CHEN QINGCHEN China

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LU KAI HUANG YAQIONG China

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TONTOWI AHMAD LILIYANA NATSIR Indonesia

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CHRIS ADCOCK GABRIELLE ADCOCK England

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RONAN LABAR AUDREY FONTAINE France

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SAM MAGEE CHLOE MAGEE Ireland

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MARK LAMSFUSS ISABEL HERTTRICH Germany

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EVGENIJ DREMIN EVGENIA DIMOVA Russia

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BW F E U RO P E AN WO R LD R ANK I NGS 10 November 2017

WOMEN’S DOUBLES

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CHEN QINGCHEN JIA YIFAN China

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MISAKI M ATSUTOMO AYAKA TAKAHASHI Japan

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CHANG YE NA LEE SO HEE South Korea

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CHRISTINNA PEDERSEN KAMILLA RYTTER-JUHL Denmark

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STEFANI STOEVA GABRIELA STOEVA Bulgaria

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ANASTASIA CHERVYAKOVA OLGA MOROZOVA Russia

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MAIKEN FRUERGAARD SARA THYGESEN Denmark

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LAUREN SMITH SARAH WALKER England

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MEN’S DOUBLES

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MARCU S FERNALDI GIDEON KEVIN SANJAYA SUKAMULJO Indonesia

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MATHIAS BOE CARSTEN MOGENSEN Denmark

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TAKESHI KAMURA KEIGO SONODA Japan

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MADS CONRAD-PETERSEN MADS PIELER KOLDING Denmark

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3

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KIM ASTRUP ANDERS SKAARUP RASMUSSEN Denmark

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VLADIMIR IVANOV IVAN SOZONOV Russia

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MATHIAS CHRISTIANSEN DAVID DAUGAARD Denmark

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MARCUS ELLIS CHRIS LANGRIDGE England

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BW F E U RO P E AN WO R LD R ANK I NGS

WOMEN’S SINGLES

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TAI TZU YING Taiwan

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KIRSTY GILMOUR Scotland

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PUSARLA V. SINDHU India

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BEATRIZ CORRALES Spain

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SUNG JI HYUN South Korea

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SABRINA JAQUET Switzerland

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CAROLINA MARIN Spain

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EVGENIYA KOSETSKAYA Russia

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10 November 2017

Find the complete world rankings on the BWF website at www.bwfbadminton.com

MEN’S SINGLES

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VIKTOR AXELSEN Denmark

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RAJIV OUSEPH England

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SON WAN HO South Korea

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HANS-KRISTIAN SOLBERG VITTINGHUS Denmark

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LIN DAN China

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JAN Ø. JØRGENSEN Denmark

ANDERS ANTONSEN Denmark

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BRICE LEVERDEZ France

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THE EUROPEAN MEDALISTS Glasgow 2017

Viktor Axelsen, Denmark, Men’s Singles Gold

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G L ASG OW 2 0 17

Kamilla Rytter Juhl and Christinna Pedersen, Women’s Doubles Bronze

Gabby and Chris Adcock, England, Mixed Doubles Bronze

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LIGHTING THE WAY FOR EUROPE Article by Emma Lollike

Viktor Axelsen lifted the trophy in Glasgow and ended a twenty-year drought for European men’s singles; Europe has a new world champion. It has made reactions all over the continent. Badminton Europe caught up with a couple of European badminton personalities to talk about how Axelsen’s victory has had an impact on badminton in Europe now and in the time to come.

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Kenneth Jonassen national head coach for Denmark, former top player I am going to put it this way; in the trainings and weeks leading up to the championships, I saw some new things from Viktor that I have not seen before. I think that I saw a higher level, especially, a tactical awareness, and, he was good in his communication. So, this provided me with the hope that if he believed in it himself all the way, his possibilities were good. I mean, did we go over there with the expectations that he would win the gold? Of course not. But we went to Glasgow to see what we could get out of it this time. And then the expectations evolved underway but he actually only played really well in the semi-final. Am I surprised? We did not have the perfect process, so with that in mind I think I saw some things where I thought to myself, ‘wow, this actually looks promising’. But the training is one thing, another thing is to deliver in the right week on the right day, to put it mildly, and I think that he was able to put all of the things together. That was the most important part over there. But he had for the past 1,5 to 2 years build up a lot of experience and, especially, within the last 12 months by winning in Dubai, winning in India, losing the Olympic semi-final, winning the bronze medal, playing at the Thomas Cup. He had all this experience from some big, important matches and knew what it meant to face all of those opponents. Also, I think it made a big difference that he knew 100 percent how he should play against Chen Long in the semi-final. And is it possible to coach a final in advance, no not really, but he was sharp in his communication and was able to handle himself in a nice way on court . I think that no matter what now it is realistic to believe that the young players also can achieve these big, prestigious titles. The small things that we work on daily and the way that the Danish system is functioning can actually produce

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world champions, also in men’s singles. 20 years went by since the last time and it is a long process where one must be dedicated for many years and have the luck on one’s side at the right times in order for everything to come together. But I believe that it has started a belief in the way that the system works, the way we are working with the players and what we think is right for them. All of this combined can deliver the ultimate outcome. He has the capacity to do it again.

Fabian Roth German national champion I watched the in final. Not live, but after. It was very impressive! And I think every player from Europe can look to Viktor and see that everything is possible. And see from Europe, even if you play in Europe everything is possible. That you can be number one in the world and that is a good thing, I think.

Hans-Kristian Frederik Søgaard Solberg Vittinghus World Junior Champion Silver friend and colleague, Thomas Cup winner 2016

Well, it was a bit ambivalent, I have to say. There is no one who deserves it more than Viktor. I mean, Viktor is by far the one who does the most to become the best in the world. And I look up to him in a lot in regards to how much he actually does to become the best. So, in that way it is difficult for me to say that anyone deserves it more than him. And I would rather that he or any other Dane won it instead of someone else. But I would also like to be the world champion and I think that I was playing well at that time. Unfortunately, I did not win my first-round match, so it is not like I can stand here and say that I was close to winning it. But it is also my dream to win that title and I was also jealous when I saw it. But that is also how I think it should be, because we are competitive people and we all want to be the best. So, it is a mixed feeling, but most of all, he deserves it crazy much and I am very happy for him. As a European, it is great that what we are working on during our practice is good enough to become the best in the world. Because there is no doubt that it is what Viktor is. He proved that at the World Championships and he proved it in Japan. And then, it is inspiring to see that if you do the things that he does, which we can see in our daily training, you can become that good. And it is great to see that it is not only the Asians that can succeed with that.

medalist in men’s doubles in 2015, plays in Odense Badminton Club (DEN)

I think it is a combination of that he is a winner who hates to lose and that he is an insanely good person. I mean, he is very sympathetic on but also off court. At the training in Brøndby, I feel like he always makes sure that there is a good atmosphere and that everyone is comfortable. He often comes over and asks how things are, and I also feel that I always can come to him. Some of the others can be difficult to get to know but he is open right away. And I think that is what makes him so special because people genuinely like him – because he is down to earth.

Steen Pedersen commentator for badmintonWorld.tv and head coach of Team Skælskør-Slagelse (DEN), former national coach in Denmark When we have a Danish world champion in men’s singles, a Spanish Olympic champion in women’s singles, we have Danes on the top in men’s doubles - it should all give other Europeans the idea that it is possible for them too. It is not because Asians are born with a special talent for badminton. It is all a matter of being exposed to good instruction and training, and do things the right way.


Then it is possible, if the player has the will and if the player is ready to do what it takes. It is not about making sacrifices, because if the player feels like it is a sacrifice they will never ever be the best. If they are walking around and are thinking about what they should have done and rather would have done, then I don’t believe they will ever be something in this sport. But I think that it [Viktor’s title] will be an inspiration, because I remember when Lars Paaske and Jonas Rasmussen won the world championships in men’s doubles [2003]. Back then, we had doubles at the training that were very equal in level and if they should be ranked at the time they won the world championships, then Jonas and Lars would probably be number three in Denmark. Jens Eriksen and Martin Lundgaard had never reached further than a quarter-final at a BWF Grand Prix tournament in Asia, but the tournament after Lars and Jonas won the world championships title, Jens and Martin won Singapore Open because they were like’ if they can win the world championships, then we can also win.’ So, the barrier that is usually build up is not there anymore. It is not only Lin Dan and Lee Chong Wei who is winning all of those titles. And I think, if we take it back to the final, Viktor has not played against Lin Dan when he was at his best and ran players off the court, so there is not the same respect anymore. Viktor has a positive score now and he is currently the only active player that has a positive score against Lin Dan, if you play more than one match against him. And there

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is something about watching players lose matches, it takes something off the respect. There was a time when Lin Dan almost did not lose any matches. We keep discussing who is the best of all time and etc. etc., which I think is hard to decide because there was also a different era, where I think someone like Erland [Kops, 1937-2017] still would be the best because the others would not be able to lift the racket he was playing with. But one of the special things about Lin Dan is that he has lost very, very few matches throughout his career. I believe that he has lost less than 100 matches in total. So, there is a lot of players who actually has never tried to beat him. And I think that because he is not so invincible anymore, because he has lost some matches, it has given Viktor a lot and he must have entered the court thinking; I have minimum a 50/50 shot here.

Bo Jensen

before and she ascribed it to the ‘Viktor effect’. But if it is extended to the other clubs or if it is only a couple of clubs that has these experiences, is simply too soon to tell.

William Kryger Boe 14, Player in Odense Badminton Club It is insane that a player from Odense has won the world championships. It gave me a bit more motivation, because he used to be just a kid running around in the club playing up against the wall in my club. I see him as an inspiration because he is so determined and committed. He wants to reach his goals and his dreams and he is chasing them 100 percent.

Badminton Denmark CEO An example: Three days after that Victor had become world champion, I received an e-mail from a youth chairperson in a club in Copenhagen, who triumphantly reported that from Monday to Wednesday they had gotten thirteen new members and at least just as many had put their names down for a test practice. As a result of that Viktor had become world champion, a number of children from Copenhagen had addressed the club because they wanted to play badminton. She wrote to me that they have never had this number of members under the age of 25 in the club

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IN PI C U RE CON T ETN T S

Y O N EX B EL G I AN IN T ERN A T I O N AL

Kento Momota is back on court, and in Belgium he showed, that he means business. The Japanese won the final claiming the first of three European titles. Four European winners were crowned in Belgium. In men‘s doubles Danish Rasmus Fladberg/Frederik Colberg took the title beating Englishmen Peter Briggs/Tom Wolfenden in the final. BADMINTON EUROPE

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One of the most exciting projects in the history of Badminton Europe (BEC) was launched this year on September 1st. A European training centre opened with the intention of developing and further improving the high performance-level of badminton in Europe. The centre is named Centre of Excellence (COE) and is allocated at Holbæk, Denmark, until 2020, by Badminton Europe’s High Performance Commission. One month in, Badminton Europe talked to two of the young players about the changes they have been through since coming to COE. Article by Emma Lollike

WHEN „ABROAD“ BECOMES HOME Elias Nicolaou, 21, and Matthew Abela, 18, are a part of the permanent squad of 16 players that live and train at the Centre of Excellence. The two guys have more than their passion for badminton in common as they both originate from two southern European islands and have left their homes in search of better sparring and potentially a full-time career in badminton.

Compared to many other big ‘badminton nations’ four clubs do not sound like a lot, but the percentage of clubs playing in the national league is not bad.

I S L A N D I C A N C E S TRY

Still, when the reality of getting high-performance training and sparring is limited, a player must make it work with what he or she has. Abela tells that what he had was between 6-7 players on the national senior training; „We don’t have a main centre

Abela, born in Pieta on Malta, started to play badminton when he was five years of age. The European member association Badminton Malta has 150 registered players, from a population of 420,000 people, that play in one of their six clubs. Only three or four of the clubs have the capacity to compete in the national league.

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PORT RAI T like this, so we had to book the courts. I was training three times with the club and three times with the academy or the national team. We would have two hours every day in the evening, except for Tuesdays because I was coaching or resting.“ Without a national centre with a big capacity, Abela and other Maltese talents also has to rely on the training in the clubs while maintaining an individual physical training schedule on the side. „In the morning, I used to do some physical work by myself so either going to the gym, running on track, stretching and stuff like this“, Abela explains. But still with all of this, it is inevitable to travel abroad at some point to broaden the horizon and get a different point of view. And for Matthew Abela that featured to turn to Badminton Europe when they announced their prospects of a European training centre. For Elias Nicolaou, the story is very similar. In his case, the journey started in Cyprus, but with the same pattern of having almost no sparring is the same. „We were just four senior players so I was alone“, he says. „In the morning I used to train alone, and, in the afternoon, I was training with the U17 and U19 team but the level was not that good.“

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At the age of eight, Elias Nicolaou started to dream big about international badminton, and from 1 September 2017 he took one more step in that direction by leaving Cyprus. Cyprus Badminton Federation has 1,000 registered players and with a national training where Nicolaou basically trained alone there is nothing to blame him for taking that move and joining Badminton Europe’s Centre of Excellence. AN EAS Y C H OIC E Abela is used to speaking English due to the fact that he has travelled to foreign countries for training and sparring. „I was moving a bit and I was spending some time in Czech Republic. I have some friends there so I used to go practice with them for a month and a half.“ „But yeah it has been a bit difficult and challenging“, he says about moving away from Malta, his home island. „But I like living alone and experiencing things.“ Nicolaou is used to turning to English when he travelled to training camps around in Europe and also once in China. „I used to travel a lot so it is something normal for me.“

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« W H E N I SE E T H E O T HE R PL AY E R S, I J U ST WANT T O PU S H M Y S E L F E VE N I F I A M N OT I N A GOOD M OOD »

And the Cypriot did not think twice before applying for the Centre of Excellence after having participated at the two prior selection camps, and he is satisfied with the product so far. „I know I can train hard here, I can train twice a day and I can focus only on badminton. We have a good structure with good coaches, we have masseurs; everything that an athlete needs.“ „It’s really good [at the centre]. I mean, when I see the other players I just want to push myself even if I am not in a good mood.“ Abela also found it obvious to leave Malta behind for this new high-performance centre. „[In Malta] We don’t have such experience and coaches that can help me to improve at a certain level. But these coaches and facilities are obviously making a big difference for all of us. The level is higher and even the sparring is much better than in Malta.“ „It will be exciting to see in a few months if the training has made a difference“, Abela states. „I want to improve, I hope that I am. I’m trying everything I can. I’d like to improve my ranking and also my game because it might need some improvement.“ TH EY AR E MY FAMILY Near Stenhus Gymnasium in Holbæk, Denmark, new temporary buildings have been put up right next to their boarding school. The sixteen of BEC’s

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COE players live their new lives as fulltime badminton players. There is a basic kitchen, allowing the players to cook their own food if they do not wish to pay for the daily meals which are provided, and a common room has just been setup with couches to match the TV and the dinning furniture. The TV has the Danish sports channel that broadcasts from all the major badminton tournaments around the world, including from the Super Series level. „Since we are practicing the same sport, we get to discuss what is happening around in the badminton world and discuss the popular news. In Malta, my friends and I did not use to speak about badminton and practice. I could talk to my badminton friends, but not so much with the friends I was going out with. So, like everyone here is talking about badminton, badminton this and badminton that. It’s really nice and I learn from it, as well“, Abela says with a big smile on his

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face. Nicolaou shares his enthusiasm towards the unity and sense of community that they have built up amongst the players. „I already feel like this is my home and they are my family so that is the reason why I adjust so fast here. Because I feel so good with them. So, it’s not just friends or sparring partners and team mates, we are a family. That’s how I see it.“ A factor that both players have noticed is that the climate is a bit colder than what they are used to in the Mediterranean Sea.

The fundamental objective and purpose of the Centre of Excellence is to assist players, like Nicolaou and Abela from minor Member Associations, who needs better sparring. High-performance badminton in Europe should be spread more out between the nations, and with this training centre, Badminton Europe hopes to accommodate the objective to raise the general level. The centre has been underway for many years and has been up and running for three months.

„There is a lot of rain and I am not used to this weather, because it is like forty degrees in Malta. So, no swimming“, Abela laughs. „But I enjoy it here.“ „Of course, it is not like my home and of course the weather is not that good here but it feels ok for me. It wasn’t difficult to adjust“, Nicolaou adds.

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The Bulgarian sisters Stefani and Gabriela Stoeva are back in the top 10 of the world’s best women’s doubles. Badminton Europe sat down with them to have a chat about life on and off court. Article by Emma Lollike 1. Who is the best women’s doubles player right now? G: I think right now the best players are the Japanese, Takahashi and Matsutomu. They win most of the tournaments so for me this is currently the best double. S: I think the Chinese pair, Jia and Chen (Chen Qingchen and Jia Yifan). To me, they are a good women’s doubles. They showed it in Glasgow at the World Championships and I’m really impressed because they are so young. I know them from the junior tournaments and I am impressed by how they are doing on the senior circuit but they are quite good. 2. Who was your badminton idol when you were growing up? G: I think especially for me it was the Chinese women’s doubles player Zhao Yunlei. I would watch her play live on the internet and I was very impressed by her net play and she

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12 SHOTS AT THE STOEVAS


INT ERV I E W was so good in defense in the rallies in every game. I think she was the idol when I watched the tournaments. S: The same for me. She was impressing me a lot with how good she was at the Olympics when she won two medals in mixed doubles and women’s doubles. And I think she was my idol when I was young. 3. Which racket do you prefer to play with? G: I play with Duraora 7 (Yonex), the red one. It’s good for me and my defense. S: I’m playing with Nanoray 800 (Yonex). Maybe next year I will change to a different, but I still haven’t found out which one. 4. Is there any special song you listen to before a match or when you practice? G: (laughing) We like to listen to Bulgarian songs. S: We live in France and we miss the Bulgarian songs, when we are alone in the hall we put Bulgarian music on. It helps us to concentrate. 5. What is your favorite movie? G: We like to watch horror movies. A lot. But to be honest my favorite movie was Fifty Shades of Grey, I read all the books and this is one of my favorite movies. S: I don’t have a favorite movie. I watch many movies with her, but I don’t have any favorites. G: We are going everywhere together and watching the same movies, and most of them are horror. And she is hiding under the blanket. S: I get really scared and I start thinking that something will come and take me. Before I would get nightmares, but now it’s okay. 6. If you could sit down and have a cup of coffee with someone, dead or alive, who would it be? S: I would pick Channing Tatum. For sure! But if it is someone from badminton I would like to have coffee with Lee Young Dae. G: I don’t know who? Maybe Christian Grey. Yeah it is a good one, I want to have coffee with Christian Grey. (Laughs) The guy who plays Christian Grey. I would just be sitting there and watching him because I would not believe that he was in front of me.

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7. What is your best advice for a young player that wants to go pro? G: I think it would be just not to give up. To follow his or her dream and to put everything on what he or she likes and wants, and just fight for it. S: To never give up when it is tough in life, to follow his or her dream, and to setup goals and to just fight to achieve them. 8. What do you think is the most important part of physical training for a badminton player? G: For the training, it is focus. You need to be focused all the time on the training if you want to be the best. S: And always to give 100 percent and if possible more than that in the training and in tournaments. This will help a player a lot.

9. Do you have a special routine or ritual you have to do before you play? S: We have a special order of colors for our dresses when we play. We have to play with the same colors in each round, we never change. Like for example, in the first round we play in black, second round in red and then we just keep going until the final. And if we win we will have the same order of colors for every tournament. But now with the new dresses from Yonex we don’t have the same colors. G: Yeah so now we need to find the right system all over again. The first round always needs to be dark, so black but now with the new colors we have changed it to dark purple. Before the second round was yellow.

S: But now maybe it will be white. G: Yeah white or light blue. 10. Your favorite place to travel for holiday? G: I think I would go home; holiday at home. For anyone who is not living in their home country, like us. S: The best place for holiday is Bulgaria. G: Yeah, when you are not home for five months away. S: But if I want to go on a real holiday I would choose Dubai. G: I would choose a place with a lot of sea, sand and sun. Just to stay in the sun all day. 11. Your favorite place in the world to play? G: My favorite tournament is Denmark Open. I like the hall, it is small and slow and perfect for ladies’ doubles. S: For me, Europe is the best place to play because there is no wind. And in Asia you have to fight with the wind and we don’t like that. 12. If you could only bring three things to an island, what would you bring? G: I would bring my hair straightener, for sure, my books and my phone. If possible, I would use it for the internet, if not I would listen to music on it. S: I would also bring my phone. I was going to say my dog, but he is not a thing, but I am going to take him and my family to not be all alone and to spent time with them. G: But at one point we would start to fight each other… S: Maybe I would also bring food for a long time. Family, food and dog, that’s enough. I don’t need phone and internet. G: Yes! I can’t believe this. S: Actually, my dog and my family would be enough. G: Yes for the first three days. But then you would go crazy. (Laughs)

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T O U R N AM E N T R E SULTS 42 N D Y O NE X HU NG A R I A N I N T E R N AT I ON A L MS: VICTOR SVENDSEN (DEN) – PABLO ABIAN (ESP) 21-13 15-21 21-12 WS: NESLIHAN YIGIT (TUR) – ALIYE DEMIRBAG (TUR) 21-11 17-21 21-18 MD: RASMUS FLADBERG/FREDERIK COLBERG (DEN) – JOEL EIPE/PHILIP SEERUP (DEN) 21-18 21-14 WD: EKATERINA BOLOTOVA/ALINA DAVLETOVA (RUS) – ELENA KOMENDROVSKAJA/MARIA SHEGUROVA (RUS) 21-13 21-9 XD: RODION ALIMOV/ALINA DAVLETOVA (RUS) – SØREN GRAVHOLT/LOUISE ERIKSSON (DEN/SWE) 25-23 21-16 LI-N IN G CZ E C H O P EN MS: KENTO MOMOTA (JPN) – THOMAS ROUXEL (FRA) 21-8, 21-14 WS: NESLIHAN YIGIT (TUR) – KAHO FUNAHASHI (JPN) 21-16, 14-21, 21-17 MD: MILOSZ BOCHAT/ADAM CWALINA (POL) – BEN LANE/SEAN VENDY (ENG) 21-18, 23-21 WD: ERINA HONDA/NOZOMI SHIMIZ (JPN) – LAUREN SMITH/SARAH WALKER (ENG) 21-13, 14-21 21-16 XD: MATHIAS BAY-SMIDT/ALEXANDRA BØJE (DEN) – BASTIAN KERSAUDY/LEA PALERMO (FRA) 12-21, 21-8, 21-18 YO NEX BE L G I AN INT E R N AT I ON A L MS: KENTO MOMOTA (JPN) – LEE CHEUK YIU (HKG) 21-14, 21-18 WS: BEATRIZ CORRALES (SPA) – QI XUEFEI (CHN) WALKOVER MD: RASMUS FLADBERG/FREDERIK COLBERG (DEN) – PETER BRIGGS/TOM WOLFENDEN (ENG) 16-21, 21-13, 21-6 WD: SELENA PIEK/CHERYL SEINEN (NED) – DEBORA JILLE/IMKE VAN DER AAR (NED) 21-14, 21-16 XD: JACCO ARENDS/SELENA PIEK (NED) – SCOTT EVANS/AMANDA HÖGSTRÖM (IRL/SWE) 21-17, 21-9 FZ FO RZ A K HARK IV I N T E R N AT I ON A L MS: TOBY PENTY (ENG) – LEE CHEUK YIU (HKG) 21-17, 21-13 WS: NATALYA VOYSEKH (UKR) – SRI KRISHNA PRIYA KUDARAVALLI (IND) 18-21, 21-16, 23-21 MD: K. NANDAGOPAL/ROHAN KAPOOR (IND) – FRANCIS ALWIN/KONA TARUN (IND) 18-21, 24-22, 21-18 WD: JOHANNA GOLISZEWSKI/LARA KAEPPLEIN (GER) – MARIA ULITINA/NATALYA VOYTSEKH (UKR) 21-15, 21-14 XD: K. NANDAGOPAL/MAHIMA AGGARWAL (IND) – SAURABH SHARMA/ANOUSHKA PARIKH (IND) 21-14, 21-15 WHIT E NI G HT S MS: PABLO ABIAN (ESP) – THOMAS ROUXEL(FRA) 15-21, 21-15, 21-18 WS: EVGENIYA KOSETSKAYA (RUS) – NESLIHAN YIGIT (TUR) 21-8, 15-21, 22-20 MD: MARK LAMFUSS/MARVIN SEIDEL (GER) – KONSTANTIN ABRAMOV/ALEXANDR ZINCHENKO (RUS) 23-21, 21-14 WD: ANASTASIA CHERVYAKOVA/OLGA MOROZOVA (RUS) – DELPHINE DELRUE/LEA PALERMO 21-8, 21-15 XD: MARVIN SEIDEL/LINDA EFLER (GER) – MARK LAMFUSS/ISABEL HERTTRICH (GER) 18-21, 21-16, 21-15 SPA NIS H I NT E RNAT I ON A L MS: YU IGARASHI (JPN) – LUÍS ENRIQUE PEÑALVER (SPA) 21-13, 21-14 WS: MIA BLICHFELDT (DEN) – EVGENIYA KOSETSKAYA (RUS) 21-12, 21-12 MD: JACCO ARENDS/RUBEN JILLE (NED) – KEEICHIRO MATSUI/YOSHINORI TAKEUCHI (JPN) 21-17, 21-19 WD: ASYAKO SAKURAMOTO/YUKIKO TAKAHATA (JPN) – MISATO ARATAMA/AKANE WATANABE (JPN) 21-10 21-15 XD: SAM MAGEE/CHLOE MAGEE (IRL) – ROBIN TABELING/CHERYL SEINEN (NED) 21-11, 21-18

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MEETING Maria Bubucea is from Moldova. She’s part of the Badminton Europe commission of Women in Badminton. We spoke to Bubucea about her political engagement. Interview by Rasmus Bech

Hi Maria,

Hi!

You are part of the Women in Badminton Commission. Tell me a little about yourself?

I am currently pursuing an academic career in Interior Design studies and undergoing badminton training as an extracurricular activity. I have been working for Moldavian Badminton Federation since January, and I am responsible for maintaining external communications and fulfilling administrative requirements which means dealing with formal documents, translating official publications, and communicating with the responsible representatives in order to solve certain issues. I participate in the meetings of the council of the federation and I am actively involved in the organization of local competitions and other events

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INT ERV I E W

THE POLITICIAN How did you get into badminton?

I started to practice badminton 2 years ago, after my sister took me with her to a tournament in Ukraine to see her play. That was the first time I saw what badminton actually is. I was extremely impressed by the passion of the players, and felt the urge to become a part of it.

You are 21 years old and part of the BEC commission for Women in badminton. How did that happen?

BEC activities became more familiar to me after I attended the Annual Delegates’ Meetings, the Members’ Forum and the BEC Awards Gala in Prague this year with the Women in Badminton scholarship. It was something quite different from the work I was doing for the federation which pushed me to want to know more about it. Besides, how else would I gain experience in some field other than being a part of the experience myself?! So, I applied for the commission.

What job are you doing there?

The commission’s primary objective is to establish and strengthen female representation in the badminton world, to embolden women to get involved in different badminton related activities, as well as encourage them to become a part of the Board of Directors and representatives of the Commissions.

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What kind of topics do you discuss at our meetings?

The essential topics are: – raising awareness about the importance of women in badminton; – highlighting women’s contribution in badminton; – promotion, development and advancement of women in badminton and any related badminton activities;

You are quite young compared to other commission members. What do you think you can bring?

The fact that I am young means I have a lot of energy, enthusiasm and courage to pursue goals. I hope that my youth will inspire other young people to get more involved into these types of activities and bring their input, their fresh ideas and their open-mindedness into developing and growing this sport in all its depth and diversity.

A lot of young people play badminton. You are also going into politics. Why do you think that badminton politics is interesting?

I believe that the interesting part consists in what we can do about it. How can we by being involved in the ‘politics’ make a valuable difference for everyone involved in the sport, and not just the athletes and coaches but also the staff members, families and the fans. It is extremely important to recognize the sport’s potential to bring out the best out of people and to unite them in a community that shares the same interests and wants to achieve a similar goal.

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INT ERV I E W

What are your ambitions for women in badminton?

What represents my ambitions the most is the desire to determine the change and be a part of the change. As a member of the ‘Women in Badminton Commission’, I am eager to motivate women to accept leading roles and work in the sport field. To set an example of expressing ambition, pursuing it and getting recognition for one’s accomplishments which will ultimately bring progress for the sport.

And if you should give younger people who would like to be part of badminton politics a short advice, what would that be?

The advice would be: go for it and don’t be afraid to follow your dreams. Believe you will succeed and you certainly will!

Thank you very much Maria. And keep on the good work you are doing for women in badminton.

Thank you, Rasmus! It‘s been a pleasure!

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L I- N IN G CZEC H O P E N

Turkish Neslihan Yigit claimed the title in Women’s singles. The Men’s doubles final was an all European thriller. Polish Milosz Bochat/Adam Cwalina took the title defeating Ben Lane and Sean Vendy from England 21-18 23-21.

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CON IN PI C T ETN U RT E S

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TOKYO 2020 PARALYMPIC GAMES The Paralympic Debut Article by Tania Teoh

Krysten Coombs

Megan Hollander

Ladies winner

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PA R A - B AD M I N TO N

Rivo Killer, Treasurer, German 2. Ă…sa Linares Norlin, Board member, Sweden 3. Ratko Kovacic, President, Croatia 4. In wheelchair Terje Jentoft Roel, Vice-President, Norway 5. Miriam Malone, Board member, Ireland 6. Lukasz Szeliga, Board member, Poland 7.Samuel Rosko, Board member, Slovakia, 8. Denis Jaeken, Board member, Belgium.

Para-badminton was chosen to be part of the Paralympic Programme in October 2014 and since then, the sport has grown tremendously. One of the main subject everyone is keen to know is the allocation for para-badminton at the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. The wait is finally over when the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) announced in September that badminton has been awarded 14 medal events in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games. 90 para-badminton players (44 male and 46 female) will experience their first ever Summer Paralympic Games when these para-athletes qualify and earn a ticket to Tokyo. Bartlomiej Mroz

Valeska Knoblauch and Karin Suter-Erath

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David Toupe

The European players to watch out from respective Sport Classes leading up to the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games are: MEN´S W H1 Thoma s Wa nd sc hnei d er (G ER) Da vi d Toup e (F R A)

Lucas Mazur

W H2 Ma r ti n R ook e (ENG) Ami r Levi (IS R ) SL 3 Luc a s Ma zur (F R A) R i c k a rd Ni lsson (S WE) SL 4 Da ni el B ethell (ENG) Ma thi eu Thoma s (F R A) SU5 B a r tlomi ej Mroz (POL) IIk er Tuzc u (TUR ) SS6 K r ysten C oomb s (ENG) Ni a ll Mc Vei g h (IR E)

Katrin Seibert

Brian Agerbak, General Secretary at Badminton Europe, is very pleased: „We are pleased that the long wait for para-badminton‘s events programme for the 2020 Paralympics is finally over. We should be satisfied with the number of para-badminton athletes who will be competing in Tokyo. Having the classes confirmed means that the players and their Federations can now start to focus more intensely on qualifying for Tokyo.“ Also the President of the BWF, Poul Erik Høyer, is happy for the IPC´s an-

Martin Rooke

nouncement: „I would like to thank the IPC for its cooperation with the BWF and for affording our athletes with impairments this golden opportunity to compete at the highest level. I know they are eagerly looking forward to it.” The Badminton World Federation (BWF) and the IPC are working in finalizing the qualification system. This qualification system enables all involved parties to plan their tournament calendars. The IPC will publish the Qualification Guide in January 2018. Niall McVeigh

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PA R A - B AD M I N TO N

WO ME N‘ S WH 1 Kar in Su t e r - E r a t h (S U I ) Valeska K n ob l a u ch ( GE R ) WH 2 Em ine S e c k i n (T U R) N ar in U l u c ( T U R) SL 3 Katar z yn a Z ie b ik (P OL ) Catherin e Na u d in (F R A ) SL 4 Katr in S e i b e r t ( G E R) Helle Sofi e S a gø y ( N OR )

Mathieu Thomas Ilker Tuzcu

SU 5 Cathr ine Ros e n g r e n ( D E N ) Megan Hol l a n d e r ( N E D )

Cathrine Rosengren

Daniel Bethell

TOK YO 2020 PAR ALYMPIC GAMES PAR A-B ADMINTON EV ENTS TAB LE

Thomas Wandschneider

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M e n‘s

Wom e n‘s

M i xe d

SI N GL E S W H1

SI N GL E S W H1

DO UB L E S S L/S U

SI N GL E S W H2

SI N GL E S W H2

SI N GL E S SL 3

SI N GL E S SL 4

SI N GL E S SL 4

SI N GL E S SU5

SI N GL E S SL 5

DO UB L E S W H

SI N GL E S SL 6

DO UB L E S SL / SU

SI N GL E S W H

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The English mixed doubles pair and reigning European champions, Gabrielle and Chris Adcock, launched a blog in their name on 18 August. Badminton Europe have talked to them about the idea behind and how players have responsibility when it comes to creating their own brand. Their new blog is a great example of players that promote themselves. 40


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ADCOCKS Building a brand Article and photos by Mark Phelan

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Article by Emma Lollike

„This is a great way for us to share what’s going on in our careers, as well as offer up general info such as our schedule, results and news, and along the way we’ll show you what we get up to when we’re competing, when we’re training, and when we’re enjoying some down time.“ That is what is written in the introductory blog post on theadcocks. com. Gabby and Chris were already active on various social media channels; a shared page on Facebook, including individual Twitter and Instagram accounts, but they have now taken a step further into the world of self-promoting and branding.

B A D M I N TON IS GR OWING

A blog in their own name where they can control how they are presented to a bigger extend than photos on Instagram and 280 characters on Twitter. The blog posts allow them to dig deeper into their lives and share even more with their fans.

The worldwide attention is also evident on the website as it is available in various languages such as Chinese, Indian, Indonesian and Malaysian. A clever move for European players who want to break into the most dominant badminton ‘market’ in Asia.

„It’s great for our fans and supporters. Also, when we meet people both who we know and also people we don‘t know we found that lot of people wanted to know more about what makes me and Gabby tick. So, in doing the blog we can share things and experiences that otherwise we wouldn‘t be able to. And we have had a great response to the blogs and also requests about what to blog about which is great“, Chris Adcock says to Badminton Europe. It was a natural decision for the pair as they wished to be able to share more with their fans, and the idea came to them when they, during the past year, discovered that they had the required potential. „I think only in the past year or so we have really been trying to now make the most of our social media channels. We love that it gives us a direct line to all our fans and supporters and hope that they enjoy it.“

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The main thought and idea behind it is simply to help the sport of badminton grow. As profiles for English as well as European badminton, the on-andoff-court couple have achieved a lot of attention and the blog is meant to help promote the sport even more. „I think in general badminton is growing tremendously year on year worldwide, and if we can help improve the sport around the world and in our country then that would be fantastic.“

„Something that was really important to us was to make sure the website was multi lingual given the fact that we compete in an international sport that is particularly well followed across Asia.“ They value the support from their fans all over the world, and writes on their blog that they do not think they would be where they are today without their support. „This website is as much for our fans as it is for ourselves, so please do use it to connect with us.“ On the blog they invite their fans inside their lives to show them their day-to-day life as international badminton players. Furthermore, they encourage their fans to comment on their posts while mentioning that they can be contacted via a form for corporate enquiries.


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And corporate enquiries are important for professional players all over the world. It is only the very best players in the world that can live off the sport and it is essential to their professional career to make contacts and sponsors. Something that has been even more crucial for the Badminton England’s players as they were cut in funding from UK Sports just after the Olympic Games in 2016. „It‘s being tough for the whole squad. Especially seeing lots of amazing people have to leave, both players and support staff“, Chris explains and continues: „I think it was the shock and surprise that made it the hardest. However how the squad has responded under this adversity has been a really credit to us all and I‘m very proud to how we have responded.“ T H E B U SI N ES S B EH IND Chris shares that to be active on social media is mostly about finding joy in doing it, because posting about your personal and professional life can seem stressful to some. „We love it, we see this as an extension to our amazing job of being a professional badminton player who represents our country. We take great pride in all of our social media profiles, so we try to talk and show things that, firstly, we love and also things that we think people might want to know about us.“ The Adcocks have people behind the scenes that have helped them out to this point with the website etc. but underlines that they prefer to be the ones to publish the posts themselves. Instead of feeling stressed about sharing a lot more from their personal lives, Chris and Gabby are simply inspired by their fans and the feedback they receive: „It‘s the best thing hearing that we can help or inspire people from doing what we are doing both on and off the court.“

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The only difference that they feel is that it is getting even more fun to do. They enjoy picking up lots of topics for the blogs. „I think the great thing about the blog is that there are many ways in which we can go. It‘s been great hearing from people with requests and what they would like to know about us. But we hope to keep surprising people and keeping the readers entertained.“ For Chris and Gabby, all that matters is that it is fun, that it is something that their fans enjoy. That is where the idea came from in the first place, and something that other players can take with them in regard to starting up their own brand on social media. Chris’ best advice for a player just starting up on social media is just to be yourself. „Be yourself! And mix it up and keep it fresh. Instagram is definitely my favourite. I find it much more fun to go through my timeline“, Chris says. And when he is asked who his biggest competition on social media is, he laughs and answers: „Gabby!“

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BULGARIAN LEGEND It is time to retire Article by Rasmus Bech

Few people in Europe have had more influence on badminton in their home country than Professor Doctor Puzant Kassabian. For 50 years, the father of Bulgarian badminton has pulled the strings but now it is time to call it a day; It is time for retirement.

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Few people in Europe have had more influence on badminton in their home country than Professor Doctor Puzant Kassabian. For 50 years, the father of Bulgarian badminton has pulled the strings but now it is time to call it a day; It is time for retirement. There he stands. In the middle of everything. In the middle of a party, which probably would not have been there if it is was not for him. We are in Sofia. The party is the 50th anniversary for the Bulgarian Badminton Federation - A federation which he founded, lead and watched growing. Puzant Kassabian was honoured on this night in September 2017, but let us turn the clock a bit back, back to where it all began – back to December 1967. On December 23rd-24th, the first badminton tournaments were played in Bulgaria and, of course, Kassabian was a big part of it. In 1967, Puzant Kassabian didn‘t just studying to become a doctor, he was also the organizer of the first four official badminton tournaments in Bulgaria. „I was a player and I was also the coach. Nobody knew badminton. It was the first official tournament in Bulga-

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ria“, Kassabian says 50 years later. „I never left the sport. This is my sport. I love badminton, and that’s why I never left. I want to show people the best of badminton. I want to show people how great our sport is.“ As a player, Kassabian helped the sport of badminton to be promoted in Bulgaria. And many Bulgarians will for sure also remember him for being a coach and a badminton politician who helped the sport growing in not only Bulgaria but in all of the eastern part of Europe. In 1989, Puzant Kassabian became General Secretary of the Bulgarian Federation, and since 1992 he has been President of the same federation. But not for much longer. It is time to let younger people lead. „It is time to stop. I am 77 years old. We have a lot of nice young people, who know how to run a federation like this. I will for sure help them and I will to my last day be part of badminton, but it’s time for other people to lead. You have a big responsibility when you are leading a sport like badminton. There is a lot of connections you have to take care of, and I think it’s good to let younger people do that“, Kassabian says. Professor Doctor Puzant Kassabian is for sure part of the Bulgarian badminton history, but he is also a part of the history


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of international badminton. On the bookshelf at in his home, he has a certificate which is almost impossible to get. „It is for the most participations at the World Championships. My first was in 1977, and the last was in 2001“, Kassabian tells adding that he has been to every single World Championships since 2001 – latest in Glasgow in August 2017 – as a doctor and an official. Bulgarian badminton and Bulgarian Badminton Federation never hesitate to honour and appreciate the big effort, Kassabian has put into the sport in their country. Looking back at the first 50 years of Bulgarian badminton, the humble Professor Doctor will not say that he is one of the biggest things that has ever happened to badminton in Europe, although many people in his home country thinks so. He is pointing in another direction, when asked about the biggest thing that has happened to Bulgarian badminton since he organized the first tournament in 1967. „The biggest success is our women’s team, who won silver medals at the European Championships in Kazan, in 2016. It was a great result, especially, because they also won the bronze medals two years prior. This means that we have a good team and good players, which we have helped to become some of the best in Europe. I am very proud of that“, Kassabian says. The stars in Bulgarian badminton are rising. After years of hard work, they are still part of the European top. But it is not only the top players who have the attention of the living Bulgarian legend. „Many years ago, we started a school project that is fighting drugs in Bulgaria. It was a big success. We got many schools to attend that project and I am happy to see that children, young and old people wants to play badminton. That makes me happy and I hope it will continue.“ And now here he stands, 50 years after the beginning. Every single person at the big gala party in Sofia is looking at him. Former players, former Bulgarian ministers, international contacts, are all giving him a standing ovation. Professor Doctor Puzant Kassabian is not just ‘anybody’ in Bulgaria - he is “The Father of Bulgarian Badminton” and now he is ready to retire.

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CON T ETN IN PI C U RT E S

DE N MA RK OPEN

In October the biggest stars of badminton visited Denmark. DANISA DENMARK OPEN presented by VICTOR was despite of lack of European success great promotion for the sport, and the spectators got to see the home crowd favourite – The World Champion Viktor Axelsen. BADMINTON EUROPE

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FABIENNE DEPREZ Sports soldier Article by Emma Lollike

A two month break from badminton. That is part of the price that German women’s singles player Fabienne Deprez must pay if she wants to continue her life in the top of German badminton.

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CON TRAI PORT E NTT

From 23 October 2017, Fabienne Deprez, 25, has put away her racket to join the German military, Bundeswehr. The German broadcaster, Deutsche Welle, writes that the German Ministry of Defense spends money each year supporting top athletes and that they are one of the biggest supporters of sports in Germany. Deprez is one of those athletes, also known as ‘sport soldiers’, and during the last 6 years she has been employed by the Bundeswehr. She, initially, joined the Bundeswehr in order to pursue her professional badminton career, and the two-month break is how she repays and gives back to the government and state of Germany. „In Germany, we [badminton players] cannot live off the salary that we get so they help us with some money and of course therefore we have to do some military stuff“, Deprez explains. „Football is really big here, but for many other sports in Germany, we can’t live from the money we get so this [Bundeswehr] is a good opportunity for us to be professional.“ A lot of other players have been sports soldiers in the past, and Deprez explains that it is ‘normal procedure’ in Germany, Austria, and other European countries. Recently retired men’s doubles player Raphael Beck has for example been a part of it, and currently ten players are in the Bundeswehr. „It’s a part of my life and it is the only way that I can be a professional athlete in Germany. So, I am just happy to have the Bundeswehr, and without this I would have to stop, so I am just happy and proud, and I really have to thank the German military for all their help.“

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O FF C O U RT

TH E R AC E TO TOK YO

Deprez could have chosen to finish her last period with the Bundeswehr in April, next year, but chose to do it now in order to play tournaments, like the European Championships (24-29 April 2018). She has chosen to do it as soon as possible to be able to focus on her goals for the next 2-3 years. „The Olympics are moving closer and closer and I am just happy that I am doing it now. There would never be a time that would be ideal for me, not this year or the year after. But I have to do it and I don’t have a choice, so I just want to get it over with now.“ While she is finishing her Bundeswehr, she will not be able to train at the national centre. All there will be possible for her is physical training, but no badminton on court. „I think it will be hard to come back and play on court after two months. I also have some club matches in France that I am going to play [during the Bundeswehr] and I don’t think it will be easy.“

„At the moment, I am not in a good position because I just play Bitburger and that’s it. After my bad game [against Linda Zetchiri at Denmark Open] I am a bit disappointed because I could have gotten even more points. But my next chance to get points is at Bitburger, so now I can relax and focus on the Bundeswehr.“ The race for ranking points is important for Deprez as she is competing against two other German women’s singles to become the best ranked for the Olympics in Tokyo, in 2020. Even though there are many years until 2020, it is still hard for Deprez to relax if she does not end as the highest ranked in Germany when the year is over. „It’s not easy, because I will lose some good points because I can’t play in France, and I did well in Scotland last year, so I will definitely lose some good points from there. So, I am not sure that I will be the highest ranked after the year is over.“

But one of the biggest issues about leaving the badminton hall for two months, is all the points she will lose to her world ranking. The Superseries Premier, Denmark Open, was her last tournament before the Bundeswehr started up again. But fortunately, she was able to play the local BWF Grand Prix Gold tournament, Bitburger Open, organized in the city of Saarbrucken.

Luise Heim, Yvonne Li and herself normally train together every day. And even though that Deprez is, respectively, four and six years older than the other two, she acknowledges that they are all running for the same spot. „I’m the highest ranked right now so I feel good at the moment. I just try be higher ranked than them. But if we play against each other in a tournament, it’s 50/50. One day

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I can win and the next day I can lose. I think it depends on how strong we are on the day.“ When they practice together there is a nice atmosphere, but she shares that problems can occur but only ‘girl stuff’. „It’s not that the practice is bad because of some problems. We have a lot of fun together and I think it’s nice group of three players.“ The three of them are friends and spend a lot of time together when they practice and travel for tournaments. And even though they are competing for the same goal, they need each other in the daily training and depending on the level of the other player on the other side of the net. „I think that when we are only three, we know that we need to have a good relationship in order to get better. We can reach more potential like that than if we play or act against each other.“ CLEV E R AND T E C HNI C A L The focus was to improve her fitness before leaving for the Bundeswehr. Two months off court calls for physical preparation. She is putting in the work even though a lot of running is not her thing. „I hate it. Every second I hate. But after I finish a session of running I’m proud that I did it. And after every run I feel that I get better and I can see it on the time when I improved. I think it’s getting better and better, but badminton is not that famous so we can live from the money we get. As I said before, if I had not had the money from the Bundeswehr I would have to stop playing.“ She studied a bachelor’s degree in International Management for three years. She is now taking a break to focus on badminton, but after her career she is planning to start where she left off and finish her studies. „I stopped studying to take a little break until the Olympics. It’s a little risky but I get good money now from the Bundeswehr, so I decided to concentrate on badminton now. Besides qualifying for the Olympics, one of the main goals for the German is to improve her ranking. “This is my last two months of the programme. I did five before and this is my last one, and then I have achieved the highest rank of what I can be as a normal soldier. So, I am happy that I went through it in six years, it’s quite quick and then I can focus on going to the Olympic Games. If I qualify of course.“

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A DAY AT CENTRE OF EXCELLENCE

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CON T E N T

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2017 BEC PARABADMINTON EVENT Belfast, Northern Ireland Article by Tania Teoh

A F LAS H B AC K IN B ELFAS T Elite players, coaches and para-badminton enthusiasts gathered and joined force to train, discuss and improve on para-badminton in their respective areas in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The event this year was a combination of the 3rd BEC Para-Badminton Education Course for coaches and a European Centralized Training Camp for elite players. 3R D B EC PAR A-B ADMINTON EDUC ATION C OUR S E The BEC Para-Badminton Education Course first edition started in 2015 in Veenendaal, the Netherlands. Since then, it has become an annual event for BEC where participants meet to discuss and exchange ideas on how to develop para-badminton. The course has evolved along the years based on the needs and feedbacks BEC received from the participants and for this third edition, the Badminton World Federation (BWF) will be delivered its pilot course of the BWF Disability Coaching Workshop. This module is forming a part of the Coach Education Level 1 resource and coaches who completed this course are able to pursue their coaching career to the next level, according to the BWF´s coaches´ pathway.

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„After three years, we currently have 90 para-badminton coaches who took part in our courses from 26 Member Associations. We feel that it is important that these coaches are integrated into the BWF coaching system so that they follow the BWF´s coaches‘ pathway. Therefore, this piloting course in Belfast this year is the optimal way to do so. I am very pleased that we managed to provide this opportunity for the BWF and hope that we will continue to develop and strengthen our coaches‘ community“, Tania Teoh, BEC Junior Manager – main contact person for para-badminton at the BEC Office says. 2015 V E E NENDAAL , T HE N E T H E R L A N D S For coa c h e s a n d a d m i n i s t r a t o r s 2016 B E E K, THE NE T HE RL A N D S For hig h p e r for ma n c e a nd d e v e lo p m e nt coache s 2017 B E LFAST, NO RT HE RN I R E L A N D For hig h p e r for ma n c e a nd d e v e lo p m e nt coache s

EUR OPEAN C ENTR ALIZED TR AINING C AMP For the very first time in European badminton history, a para-badminton centralized training was organized for the European elite players in Belfast, Northern Ireland. The main aim for this training camp is to provide the best training conditions for European players heading to the BWF Para-Badminton World Championships in Ulsan, South Korea from 21-26 November 2017. A total of 28 players from 13 Member Associations took part in the 3 days´ camp led by Kaity Hall, Head Coach of the training camp. All 6 Sport Classes were represented at the training camp with multiple sparring possibilities, different training themes (speed work, consistency, match analysis, etc.) and the time to bond with players and coaches from other countries. „I was thrilled to be asked to coach at the 1st Badminton Europe players training camp. I was conscious that most of the players would be headed off to South Korea the following week for the World Championships so I put together a program that would introduce some new thoughts on approaching game play and tournaments as well as a lot of on court speed and match practice“, Kaity Hall says. BEC looks forward to welcoming all our Member Associations to future BEC para-badminton activities.

BADMINTON EUROPE

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TOURNAMENT JAN U ARY 2 0 1 8

We e k

D ate

Ti tle

Ci ty

C a t e gor y

Week

Date

Ti tle

Cit y

Cate g o r y

13

27–1

Orleans Masters

Orleans

BWF Level 6

2

9–14

Thailand Masters

Bangkok

BWF Level 5

13

29–1

Croatian International

Zagreb

Fut. Series

2

11–14

Estonian International

Tallinn

Int. Series

3

16–21

Malaysia Masters

Kuala Lumpur

BWF Level 4

3

18–21

Swedish Open

Lund

4

23–28

Indonesia Masters

4

25–28

5

30–4

APR IL 2018 We e k

D ate

Ti tle

Ci ty

C a t e gor y

Int. Series

14

5–8

Finnish Open

Vantaa

Int. Challenge

Jakarta

BWF Level 4

15

10–15

China International

Ling Shui

BWF Level 6

Iceland International

Reykjavik

Int. Series

15

12–15

19th Dutch International

Wateringen

Int. Series

India Open

New Delhi

BWF Level 4

16

19–22

Hellas International

Sidirokastro

Fut. Series

17

24–29

2018 European Championships

Huelva

BEC Event

FEB RU ARY 2 0 1 8 Week

7

7 8 8 9 9

Date

Ti tle

Cit y

Cate g o r y

MAY 2018

13–18

European Men's and Women's Team Championships

Kazan

BEC Event

We e k

D ate

Ti tle

Ci ty

C a t e gor y

European U15 Championships

18

1–6

Auckland

Kazan

New Zealand Open

BWF Level 5

19

8–13

Australia Open

Melbourne

Swiss Open

Basel

BWF Level 5

19

10–13

Slovenia International

Medvode

Int. Series

20

20–27

Thomas & Uber Cup Finals

Bangkok

BWF Event

21

24–27

Romanian International

22

31–3

Latvia International

Jelgava

Fut. Series

16–18 20–25 21–24 27–4 28–3

Austrian Open Spain Open Slovak Open

Vienna Bilbao Trencin

BEC Event BWF Level 5 Int. Challenge BWF Level 5 Fut. Series

Fut. Series

MA RCH 2 0 1 8 Week

Date

Ti tle

Cit y

Cate g o r y

10

6–11

German Open

Mulheim an der Ruhr

BWF Level 5

53. Portuguese International

Caldas da Rainha

Int. Series

All England Open

Birmingham

BWF Level 2

10 11 11 12

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8–11 14–18 15–18 22–25

KaBaL International Karviná Polish Open

Karviná

Int. Series Int. Challenge

J UNE 2018 We e k

D ate

Ti tle

Ci ty

C a t e gor y

23

7–10

Lithuanian International

Kaunas

Fut. Series

24

12–17

USA Open

24

14–17

Spanish International

Madrid

Int. Challenge

25

19–23

European Club Championships

Białystok

BEC Event

25

19–24

Canada Open

BWF Level 5

BWF Level 6


T O U R N AM E N T

CALENDAR 2018 Week

26

Date

Ti tle

26–1

Malaysia Open

Cit y

Ca te g o r y

Kuala Lumpur

BWF Level 3

OC TOB ER 2018 We e k

D ate

Ti tle

Ci ty

C a t e gor y

40

2–7

Chinese Taipei Open

Taipei City

BWF Level 5

41

9–14

Dutch Open

Almere

BWF Level 6

JU LY 2 0 1 8 Week

Date

Ti tle

Cit y

Cate g o r y

27

3–8

Indonesia Open

Jakarta

BWF Level 2

42

16–21

Denmark Open

Odense

BWF Level 3

27

4–8

White Nights

Gatchina

Int. Challenge

43

23–28

French Open

Paris

BWF Level 3

28

10–15

Thailand Open

Bangkok

BWF Level 4

44

30–4

Macau Open

Macau City

BWF Level 5

29

17–22

Singapore Open

Singapore

BWF Level 4

44

30–4

Bitburger Masters

Saarbrucken

BWF Level 6

30

24–29

Japan Masters

Akita

BWF Level 6

30

24–29

Russian Open

Vladivostok

BWF Level 6

We e k

D ate

Ti tle

Ci ty

C a t e gor y

30–5

World Championships

Nanjing

BWF Event

45

5–10

World Junior Mixed Team Championships

Toronto

BWF Event

45

6–11

China Masters

Fuzhou

BWF Level 3

46

12–18

World Junior Championships

Toronto

BWF Event

46

13–18

Hong Kong Open

Hong Kong

BWF Level 4

47

20–25

Scotland Open

Glasgow

BWF Level 6

31

NOV EMB ER 2018

AUG U S T 2 0 1 8 Week

Date

Ti tle

Cit y

Cate g o r y

32

7–12

Vietnam Open

Ho Chi Minh City

BWF Level 6

SE PT E MBE R 2 0 1 8 Week

Date

Ti tle

Cit y

Cate g o r y

47

20–25

Syed Modi International Badminton Championships

Lucknow

BWF Level 5

36

6–9

Belarus International

Minsk

Test event European Games

48

27–2

Korea Masters

Kwangju

BWF Level 5

36

7–16

European Junior Championships

Tallinn

BEC Event

37

11–16

Japan Open

Tokyo

BWF Level 3

38

18–23

China Open

Changzhou

BWF Level 2

38

18–23

Indonesia International

BWF Level 6

38

20–23

Polish International

Int. Series

39

25–30

Korea Open

BADMINTON EUROPE

Seoul

DEC EMB ER 2018 We e k

D ate

Ti tle

49

7–9

EMTC Qualification

BWF Level 4

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YONEX FREN CH OP EN

A lot of happiness in Paris for the Danes. Young gun Anders Antonsen beat Chinese super star Chen Long. The new mixed doubles pair Christinna Pedersen and Mathias Christiansen performed well in their second tournaments as a pair. Mathias Boe and Carsten Mogensen made it to the podium.

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IN PI C T U R E S

BADMINTON EUROPE

61


BADMINTON EUROPE

2 017

We will always remember you – European Legends Erland Kops and Tom Bacher passed away in 2017

Rajiv Ouseph became the first Englishman since Steve (1990) to win the European Championship in Men’s

Four presidents on the same spot.


A night of celebration – 50th Anniversary in Prague

#WELIVEBADMIN

TON

Viktor Axelsen be came World Champion in Glasgow

Baddeley singles.

ralympic spor t

w an official pa

n is no Para-badminto


Badminton Europe Magazine issue 26 / December 2017  
Badminton Europe Magazine issue 26 / December 2017  

Read the latest Badminton Europe (BEC) magazine. Issue 26 / December, 2017. Do you want to read other BEC Magazines? Here they are: https:/...

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