ADD the Badminton Asia Team Championships among the international competitions descending on the Philippines this year.
This, after Badminton Asia confirmed late last week that the third staging of the championships will be held at the Rizal Memorial Stadium from Feb. 11–16.
Seeing how the country is experiencing a resurgence in the sport, Badminton Asia deemed it fit to hold the continental meet in the country.
“I think the Philippines is one of the fastest-developing nations in badminton. And it is good to bring an event like this in a developing badminton country. The game can be promoted to the masses better with an event like this,” said Badminton Asia Chief Operating Officer Chit Boon Saw.
The last time the country hosted the Asian Championships (individual) was 19 years ago in 2001.
The Badminton Asia Team Championships is among the international competitions the Philippines is set to host in 2020, which include the Asian Swimming Championships in November, the AFF Women’s Football Championship and the ASEAN Para Games.
The badminton event is also a high-stakes tournament as Olympic qualifying points are up for grabs for the competitors.
Over 290 shuttlers from all over the continent are expected to arrive for the competition, headlined by defending men’s champion Indonesia and women’s champion Japan.
Mr. Saw also hopes that the Philippine national team would make use of the tournament to further hone its skills.
“I hope the Philippine team takes this as an opportunity to learn and grow in the team event. As you know, there are not a lot of team tournaments in the world so this will be a good opportunity to learn on your home court,” said Mr. Saw. — Michael Angelo S. Murillo