Badminton one of world’s popular sports

Fadhil Yunus

Badminton remains one of the most popular sports in the world with a high level of interest consistently in some of the biggest markets within Asia as well as high participation rate across Europe and significant growth in the Americas.

Taipei Economic and Cultural Office Representative in Brunei Darussalam Andrew H C Lee said this in his opening remarks during the opening ceremony of the inaugural Chung Hwa Kiudang School (CHSK) Badminton Open 2020 in Tutong recently. With huge interest among Taiwan people, he highlighted their world-class stars in female badminton star Tai Tzu-ying and world number two in men’s singles Chou Tien-Chen.

“Badminton players from Taiwan have been doing fairly well in major Opens over the past few years,” he said.

He added, “Tai Tzu-ying regained her title as the number one in the world in the women’s singles category in March at the Yonex All England Open in Birmingham, while Chou Tien-chen remained the world’s number two player in men’s singles after All England Open.”

Citing information from the Badminton World Federation (BWF), he said that badminton, as a high profile and successful Olympic sport, is the sixth most preferred sport on television globally and the most popular of all racket sports.

Taipei Economic and Cultural Office Representative in Brunei Darussalam Andrew H C Lee with Chung Hwa Kiudang School Badminton Open organisers and players. PHOTO: CHUNG HWA KIUDANG SCHOOL

Over 140 million people played badminton in 2019, which is 27 per cent of the global fan base estimated at a population of 500 million people.

The ongoing competition is currently being staged at a new multi-functional sport hall.

“We are here not only to be part of a badminton event, but also to witness and celebrate the birth of this multi-purposed venue,” said Andrew.

With the tournament currently running until December 27, dozens of teams in men’s pairs will be vying for top honours.