Shuttlers smash proposed scoring changes

Reuters| Last Updated: May 23, 2014, 12:43 PM IST

Badminton does not need an alternative scoring system and tweaking the existing format would be "idiotic", according to a number of the world`s top shuttlers.

The Badminton World Federation has opened discussion on the sidelines of the ongoing Thomas and Uber Cup in New Delhi, seeking views on a new scoring system that it hopes would make the game shorter, more exciting and television-friendly.

Under the existing format, the winner is the player who reaches 21 points, two clear of the opponent, in the best-of-three games.

The three alternatives BWF has suggested are two games of 21 following by a third of 11, three 15-point games and five games of nine points.

The proposal has already received a thumbs-down from the game`s leading star and Chinese stalwart Lin Dan.

"I don`t think making changes like this is good for the game," the two-time Olympic gold medallist said. "There is nothing wrong with the present system."

Denmark`s Jan O Jorgensen was more forthright in his criticism of the proposal.

"I think it`s a bad idea," the world number three said after his agonising 22-20 14-21 17-21 loss to Malaysian Lee Chong Wei in the Thomas Cup quarter-finals at the Siri Fort Complex on Thursday.

"You have games in 30 minutes and you also have in 70 minutes but that`s the charm of the game.

"Who does not want to see us go down the stretch in a hour game? I think it`s ridiculous...cutting the Thomas Cup ties is an idiotic idea."

Jorgensen pointed to his own intense hour-long fight against world number one Lee to prove his point.

"I don`t see why we need that. I can see that with more exciting points but what I have played here is not exciting then I don`t know what`s exciting," said the Dane, still dripping sweat.

India head coach Pullela Gopichand also finds it a futile exercise.

"I don`t see a need to tinker with the current format because the sport has become popular as it is," said the 2001 All-England champion.

"Neither the players nor the spectators are complaining about it, so why is it being talked about?"