Ginseng power for China

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The Chinese Badminton Association has confirmed massive overhaul of its coaching setup to check the country’s continued slide of the game at the international stage.

And for the first time non-Chinese coaches – Kang Kyung-jin and Yoo Yong-sung, both from Korea – will helm the Chinese shuttlers with an eye on the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

The last straw for China was the country’s disappointing show at last month’s World Championships in Basel, Switzerland. Winning only one title stood out like a sore thumb for the Chinese.

China featured in only one final and this was in the mixed doubles where top seeds Zheng Siwei-Huang Yaqiong retained their title with a 21-8, 21-12 win over Thailand’s No 4 seeds Dechapol Puavaranukroh-Sapsiree Taerattannachai.

The disappointing show in Basel called for a roll call and injection of new blood, China BA president Zhang Jun was quoted in news reports coming out from China.

Interestingly, former Chinese ace coach Li Mao, who had coaching stints in Malaysia and Korea with significant success is also back in the coaching setup after 21-years.

Kyung-jin led Korea to the Sudirman Cup title in 2017 but found himself out after last year’s Asian Games in Indonesia.

Other Korean coaches like Kim Ji-hyun (women) and Park Tae Sung (men) were also axed and are now with India and the Indians stole the limelight in Basel. P.V. Sindhu won the women’s singles crown – the first Indian to win the world title.

In the men’s singles, Sai Praneeth won the bronze in the men’s singles as India ended on a high in the world meet.

With the new blood in the setup, Kyung-jin and Yong-sun will handle the doubles while Li Mao will take charge of the men’s singles with the Tokyo Olympics on the radar. – Badminton Asia

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