Asia-born woman immigrants winning European titles

Discussion in 'European Championships 2006' started by Loh, Apr 17, 2006.

  1. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    "Many foreign talents who migrate to 'greener pastures' often make an impact on their adopted countries by excelling and working hard to remain at the top, particularly for China-born women badminton players.

    Below is a writeup extracted from Agence France-Presse, Den Bosch, Netherlands, which is reported in our Straits Times today:

    Xu Huaiwen, the China-born world No. 5, has become the latest and most unusual sign of how Asia is dominating the Olympic sport of badminton.

    Xu's success in the Dutch city of Den Bosch on Sunday made her the third successive player born and bred in an Asian country to have won the European women's singles title.

    The 30-year-old from Guiyang did that by winning the final 15-21, 21-9, 21-16 against Mia Audina Tjiptawan, the Olympic silver medallist. It was her reward for regular practice against men since moving to live near the Olympic centre in Saarbrucken four years ago.

    A naturalized German, Xu had already become the first player from her adopted country to have won a world championship medal - a bronze in Anaheim, California, in September.

    Her predecessor as European women's champion was Mia, who won the deciding encounter for her native country of Indonesia in the Uber Cup world team final at the age of 14. She later moved to The Netherlands after marrying Tylio Lobman, a Dutch gospel singer.

    Mia has represented The Netherlands for the last six years and became the second Asian-raised player to win the European title, in Geneva in 2004, when she too defeated a defending champion. That was her Dutch compatriot Yao Jie, another former Chinese squad member. There could be other emigrants who may become European champions.

    One of them is Pi Hongyan, the world No 4 from France who originated from Chongqing in China.

    More players may take the gamble of moving to the West, attracted by guaranteed funding to overseas tournaments because there is less competition for this than in their home countries."

    And I may add, more foreign coaches too, mainly from China and Indonesia.
     
    #1 Loh, Apr 17, 2006
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2006
  2. chris-ccc

    chris-ccc Regular Member

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    Hi Loh,

    I am not commenting on China at the present situation, but commenting on China about 15 years ago. And I am not from China, and the post here is based on what I was told by Chinese players in my coaching classes.

    15 or more years ago, the Chinese Government believed that for China's population to be fit and healthy, they must participate in some kind of sports. So school children, when they were around 6 or 7, were asked which sports they would like to participate in. Some would choose to play badminton.

    Some of these players go overseas later to further their education. So when they come to Australia to study, and when they come to my coaching classes, they already have 10 or more years' experience in playing badminton. So you can imagine their skill level.

    And, when these young players in China showed some talent in badminton while in junior or high schools, they would be selected to attend Special Badminton Schools. These young players actually get some income/payment from their government as they attended these Special Schools, even when they were only like 12 years old.

    So in a way, they were already professional players(because they were receiving some income). These young school children were receiving about half an average adult income per week. Of course, their parents would encourage them to continue with their programs because it was bringing in more income to the family.

    When they get older, say 14 or 15, and if they are good at their sport, they would be invited to train with their city/province senoir teams, again receiving income doing it.

    So you can see how good a Chinese player can be when they reached the age of 18 or so.

    Many of these players migrated overseas to play badminton professionally... as you mentioned... "to greener pastures". As you mentioned Xu migrated to Germany. There are so many others, eg Li Li to Singapore, Pi to France, Yuan to Scotland, etc...

    But to us "Lovers of Badminton", it does not matter where you come from... we just want to see better Badminton, so that we can learn to play better, by just from watching them.
     
  3. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Hi Chris,

    Nice to hear from you and to get a better insight into the Chinese system of training young badminton players. I think to a certain extent, Singapore has adopted some of it as we have 'imported' a number of young players in their teens. As you've mentioned, Li Li was one of our surviving pioneers (as I think two of her batch have dropped out) who have made an impact on our badminton scene and many more will follow. Xing Aiying is another better known foreign talent of ours. :)

    I agree that it is a win-win situation for the player and the host country and the ultimate beneficiaries are badminton fans around the world because they can watch good badminton and many more talented faces.

    I was at the MCG but missed the chance of meeting up with you. Do you happen to coach at Stringers? When I played there one evening with fellow BFer's Kim, BadFever, FEND and kong-19, Kim did point out to us a coach from Vietnam who is highly skilled. My young Vietnamese friend, Nicky Hoang, who is studying at our NUS in computer science and who once played for the Vietnam national team, also mentioned that he has a friend now residing in Melbourne. Maybe you're not the same person. :D
     
  4. chris-ccc

    chris-ccc Regular Member

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    Sorry Loh,

    I came from Malaysia not Vietnam. But I know the player from Vietnam that you are referring to. His name is Hung Pham. He is coaching at Springers(not Stringers). He is a good coach. And he is also playing as a member in the Australian National Team.
     
  5. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Thanks for the clarification. No wonder FEND seems to know you as he also hailed from Malaysia. :p
     
  6. crosscourt

    crosscourt Regular Member

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    why is it that this phenomenon seems to be limited to women? Why aren't some of the Asian men seeking greener pastures? Is it just that womens badminton is played at a less competetive level in Europe?
     

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