Badminton: BWF to test new five-game scoring system from August

Kuala Lumpur: Players' might have been opposing the idea of rule changes but the Badminton World Federation (BWF) today decided to test a best of five games scoring system from August.

Top players such as Lin Dan and Jan Jorgensen have voiced their reluctance to the idea of changing the existing three-game format but BWF has decided to explore the idea of five games of 11 points.

 Badminton: BWF to test new five-game scoring system from August

Chinese star Lin Dan is opposed to the new scoring system. Reuters

"Following the BWF Council meeting on May 30, it has been agreed to invite tournament hosts to trial this scoring option, starting from August," the BWF said in a statement.

"While no decision has been taken on whether a new scoring system will be adopted, the Council has determined there is enough interest in the matter to consider what alternatives there may be and how these would alter badminton for players, fans and other stakeholders."

Justifying the need for a test, BWF President Poul-Erik Hoyer said over the years the level of excitement has been compromised in pursuit of ending games and matches.

"In recent years, the increasing time span of matches and long lead-up to the end of games and matches – especially where there's a big points difference – has somewhat compromised the level of excitement," said Hoyer.

Poul-Erik said the BWF will evaluate the feedbacks from the various people involved during its Council meeting in November before recommending any changes.

"If things go well we may take things further but that decision has not been made yet. We have a Council meeting in November at which time we will evaluate the feedback and data that we get from this testing," he said.

Badminton great Lin Dan had slammed the plans saying the frequent change of rules would not be good for the sport. "It has been changed quite a lot, from 9, 15 to 21, now changing back. I think this is not the best part of badminton to change the scores time and again. I don't think making changes like this is good for the game. There is nothing wrong with the present system," Lin had said on the sidelines of the Thomas and Uber Cup in New Delhi.

BWF said testing may take place at Level 3 and Level 4 tournaments – including Grand Prix events – and given the number of tournaments scheduled between August and November, there is the possibility of a sizable testing pool.

This is the first formal discussion on the scoring system since 2006 when BWF introduced a rally point scoring system (21x3) which remains in place.

The BWF will also launch an online poll to gather opinions from badminton's large fan base. These views will also be considered at the Council's year-end deliberations.

Based on the feedback from testing, the BWF Council will consider if to recommend any changes to the current scoring system to its membership – and whether any changes should take place before or after the Rio 2016 Olympics.

If there is to be a change before the Rio Games, it would have to be decided before the Olympic Qualification period which starts in May 2015.

PTI

Updated Date: Jun 20, 2014 15:30:30 IST