While the badminton sport originated from Europe, it is the Asians that lord the game. Badminton powerhouses China, Indonesia, and Malaysia have been trampling their European counterparts most of the time, and it seems the trampling will not end just yet.
Come 2008 Olympics, I expect China to rule the taraflex once more, but I really wish that those guys from Europe go home with the crown. It has been too long since we saw a certain Peter Gade standing on the top podium. Europe needs to regain dominance of the sport that came from its bosom.
As usual, Europe’ badminton hopes rest on Kenneth Jonassen (Denmark), Peter Gade (Denmark), Gail Emms (Great Britain), Yao Jie (The Netherlands) and Pi Hongyan (France).
On a lighter note, New Zealand will send 3 badminton players to the 2008 Beijing Olympics. John Moody (Men’s singles) and the mixed double team-up of Craig Cooper and Renne Flavell will compete in their first Olympic outing. I haven’t seen these guys play or even heard of them, and they will definitely lose. But what is good is that New Zealand is now taking the sport seriously. They are still a long shot from becoming a powerhouse, but who knows? Maybe 10, 15 years from now, I’ll be cheering for New Zealand.
Good luck to all badminton players competing in the 2008 Beijing Olympics!