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What do you think about what happened in the badminton with four pairs throwing matches, and with Nadeshiko Japan's coach instructing his players not to win? Is it just tactics or bad sportsmanship?

21 Comments

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21 Comments
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The problem is the tournament design, with meaningless matches. Always happens when there are qualifying pools like that. See eg football world cup where top two teams play for a draw...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

What of the Brit cyclist who deliberately crashed after getting off to a bad start just so he could restart the race? Is that good sportsmanship?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

No longer a supporter of the women's soccer team. I don't knowing support cheaters and that is what they are. I'm wondering how the ladies feel about their coach. I can't see him being around much longer after this. Get rid of them and ban him from the Olympics.

The badminton players?! Ban them. And their coaches.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Shud have said:

For team sports who have games THEY DONT HAVE TO WIN I can see.....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The badmintons pairs getting tossed was bang on! Good on the IOC!

NOW, the IOC is clearly FRACKED UP, too many events are set up so teams will knowingly try NOT to win, THIS IS WRONG! FIX IT!

Now as for nadeshiko, in another thread in the same post I praised their success & also lambasted them for UNSPORTSMAN LIKE CONDUCT, which they truly deserve to be called on for!

For team sports who have games I can see resting players, ditto for those with nagging injuries which cud get worse........& very importantly you give other team members some REAL EXPERIENCE, but you send them out to WIN regardless, not for a tie or worse a loss, that shud not be allowed, PERIOD!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Honestly, I don't see these things as the same at all. Nadeshiko played a real game of football - they just didn't expend all their energy in trying to get a win they didn't need. The badminton players, in contrast, didn't play the game which they were supposedly competing in and which people payed hundreds? thousands? of pounds to see. It was clearly over the line.

Having said that, who organises a competition with incentive not to win?

This is an extraordinarily important point. I put a lot of blame on the organizers of the badminton games.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Man am I late to this party or what. Nadeshiko should have been disqualified in my opinion. The players don't deserve it, but you have the coach on record aiming for a draw and telling players not to shoot for goal. That's it right there, bam, you're out. Take your anti-Olympic spirit back to the land of FIFA and very crappy local leagues.

Having said that, who organises a competition with incentive not to win? That's exactly what the organisers managed to achieve by scheduling unequal conditions for the quarterfinal matches. An eight-hour bus ride into the countryside to satisfy the local economy? Well the fans at the Japan-South Africa game paid for that didn't they.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Not much difference really, neither equates to playing to win which is what they are supposed to do and pledged to do.

There IS a big difference between one team playing to tie and two teams playing to lose, especially in soccer, where one goal can reverse the entire outcome.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

If the badminton federation didn't want intentional slackers, it shouldn't have encouraged them to be slacking intentionally. For example, the expelled Chinese team was clearly attempting to manipulate the 16-team bracket so that it would not have to face the other Chinese team until the final instead of the semifinals. This would have made it possible for China to win gold and silver medals rather than gold and bronze. Wouldn't you do that for your teammates? For your country?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm shocked.

Nadeshiko Japan became a beacon of hope for the Japanese people after March 11 last year... and by winning the ladies' World Cup they became superstars... and now this. This is like a kick in the teeth to all those people who supported them.

As for the badminton... whatever happened to doing your best? It makes you wonder if what you're watching is actually genuine. Just what is going on with the IOC that they are allowing this kind of thing to happen.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Historically there always have been and there continue to be a number of incidents of doping, cheating or playing the system in the Olympics. With millions at stake for the colour of a medal won or lost in hundredths of seconds or mere millimeters, that's not going to change.

I agree with Probie. Every athlete and every team wanting to be considered a champion should be playing to win. Always. Those who do not should be kicked out. (When it's as obvious as the badminton teams made it--playing worse than elementary school students, there's little else to do. Bravo to the IOC for taking a stand.) However, that rule ought to be applied consistently. It isn't. Other teams (in hockey for example) have done the same--Canadians for one. But at least they scored a few goals and skated up and down the ice for an hour before aiming their shots just a little wide of the net. They didn't sit down on the blue line.

Where the IOC has structured the way competitors advance in a tournament inappropriately, the IOC needs to change the system. Every point must count. If there is the potential for a draw, every shot on goal should be counted for or every fault mean a deduction. That alone would do a great deal to eliminate the problem. The IOC and every federation in every sport has to make it harder to cheat the system.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

As I posted in a different column herewith when commenting on the badminton scandal ... and what the Japanese women's soccer team did in playing for a draw against a much-weaker South African team was done in the name of the spirit of the Olympics? Guess if FIFA says it's okay to play a game so as to get an easier schedule in the next round, then it's okay to play below your ability.

But this is the Olympics, not a FIFA tournament. I believe if punishment is handed out for belittling the Olympic spirit to one or two teams (such as in badminton), then it must be dealt with evenly with all participants.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Second, there's a difference between playing to lose and playing to tie.

Not much difference really, neither equates to playing to win which is what they are supposed to do and pledged to do.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

There are two differences.

First, there was more than one Chinese badminton pair, so there's the potential not just for a pair to game the rules, but also for a country to game the rules with multiple pairs. Verusus there being only one soccer team per country.

Second, there's a difference between playing to lose and playing to tie.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

They should all be banned from the Olympics. I can't imagine any of the great teams or great athletes of all time using such tactics. It's a disgrace to sports.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

As Probie said, it is really insulting. But also to the opponent being allowed to win, despite they are trying to play seriously. They're just being made fun of.

If Nadeshiko Japan did it too, they should be kicked out.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

大和撫子 Would ususally imply some degree of ideal - not trying to win is probabaly not a part of 大和撫子

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

It is completely disgusting. There are people conned into paying to view such stupid games. I think it's system's fault for:

1 - not reinforcing the Olympic rule of "Do your best in order to win". "Naze-shikko" Japan should be eliminated after their wonderful performance two days ago.

2 - allowing for a groups championship style, giving the stronger teams the option of choosing their next game's opponent.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

I think any team or athlete that doesn't play to win, shouldn't be there in the first place and should be kicked out and banned for a few years. It's insulting.

People paid money to watch them play half-heartedly.

The Japanese team didn't want to travel. So why did they travel halfway across the world in the first place? Pathetic. It's not like they'd be on a cramped bus anyway. And surely they didn't have to take the bus, they couldn't have flown? You should play to win on the pitch, not by sneaky plots.

Double standards.

For all we know their coach or someone involved could have had a lot of money on that result.

Stuff like this happening at the Olympics of all places, is disgusting.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

I think it's as bad as the badminton scandal. I hope the coach apologises for his brain fart.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

As bad as each other. It was the right decision to get rid of the badminton players, but why are there double standards? Just because it's more obvious in badminton (where you get points every minute)? The Japanese coach even admitted it. Get rid of these round-robin matches, draw up the list of matches according to the players' rankings and make each match a sudden death. And also for badminton, make sure teams of the same country are put in separate halves of the draw.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

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