BWF President Poul-Erik Høyer addresses the BWF Annual General Meeting ©BWF/BadmintonPhoto/Edwin Leung

Poul-Erik Høyer, President of the Badminton World Federation (BWF), has reiterated the importance of the sport continuing to remain “free of corruption and manipulation from external forces” at its Annual General Meeting in Dongguan.

Delivering his President’s Review in the Chinese city at the 76th edition of the gathering, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) member, said the BWF takes the matter seriously, with everyone having a role to play in keeping the sport clean.

“As members - you all have an obligation to provide education programmes for our youth in the sport in the areas of anti-doping and anti-match fixing,” Høyer told the 106 member associations in attendance.

He also looked ahead to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and highlighted innovation as key to ensuring badminton continues to improve “as a sports-entertainment commodity”.

“Badminton needs to deliver a really great product in the very competitive global sports market…to create more enjoyment and excitement for spectators and viewers and to meet the expectations of our fans,” Høyer explained.

Of the 182 Badminton World Federation member associations 106 were in attendance in China
Of the 182 Badminton World Federation member associations 106 were in attendance in China ©BWF/BadmintonPhoto/Edwin Leung

“Last year we made a really great effort to review the current scoring system which has been in place since 2006 - and I thank all those who participated in this.

“The testing has given valuable input to the process to develop the game.

“We, the Council, feel it is our obligation to keep on thinking about innovation and progress of our game, and  the Council will again discuss this next Tuesday to determine what we need to do to follow up (on) the data collection process since November 2014.”

Høyer reflected back on last year as “truly productive” and spoke of badminton’s inclusion on the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games sports programme as “one of the really great achievements of 2014”, providing an opportunity to demonstrate how badminton is a sport for all.

“We heard an inspirational presentation from a really talented Paralympic champion (referencing a keynote address by retired Canadian Paralympic swimmer Stéphanie Dixon at yesterday’s Member’s Forum).

“I can’t help but wonder which Para-badminton stars will emerge in the next five years as we prepare for the Tokyo 2020 Paralympic Games,” he added.

Finally, Høyer acknowledged the role played by BWF’s sponsors, as well as its relationship with both the IOC and the Association of Summer Olympic International Federations, and underlined the body’s commitment to worldwide development.

Related stories
May 2015: 
Badminton World Federation signs title sponsorship deal with Total
November 2014: New badminton scoring system will not be introduced before Rio 2016, BWF confirms
November 2014: Badminton World Federation signs up to IBIS in an effort to tackle corruption in sport
July 2014: Badminton World Federation celebrates 80 years
June 2014: Badminton set to test new scoring system from August