Aviva Open Singapore 2005 - Impressions

Discussion in 'Singapore Open 2005 / Malaysia Open 2005' started by Loh, Jul 6, 2005.

  1. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    I started off by saying this year's Singapore Open will be the best ever. And it did not disappoint!

    At that time, it was the unprecedented vast array of badminton stars that was to grace the occasion that made me say that. And it coincided with IOC's 117th Session in Singapore to decide on the host country for the 2012 Summer Olympics. Indeed, apart from IBF officials like Dep President, Punch Gunalan, I could also see the ex-President of the IOC, Mr Juan Antonio Samarauch.

    But at the end of it all, the event had surpassed most expectations.

    Spectators

    Starting with a scant attendance during the qualifying rounds the crowd soon swelled to about 5,000 during the quarter finals and crescendoed to an all-time record of over 8,000 even when no Singaporeans qualified for the finals. That was a fantastic response and it clearly showed that Singaporeans will support quality events.

    Audience participating was the best on finals day as many made quite a din with their balloon sticks and bare hands, clapping them in unison to the rhythmic initiatives from the loudspeakers. No rowdiness nor obtrusive shouting was encountered yet there was clearly a sign of appreciation for the effort that the players made on court. Still the China flag and big Chinese characters adorn the galleries from time to time.

    As to food and drinks, Cheers, who was one of the sponsors, provided a more varied range of food and drinks at reasonable prices compared to previously. Another sponsor, Tiger, supplied beer.

    Despite its age, SIS has always been a pleasant sports venue with great ambience, airconditioning and proper lighting. The lobby which housed the catering outlets and sports stalls, however, seemed a little congested because of the record crowd during the intervals. The recent renovations, especially on the refurbishment of the seats, will prolong SIS's life until a new indoor stadium is built in the vicinity. However, a leak on the roof was spotted during one match and this has to be repaired. Certainly a much better venue than most other stadiums in the region that I have visited.

    I shall end this part of my 'Impressions' with the following pics:
     

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  2. ants

    ants Regular Member

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    Nice pics and good coverage during the Aviva Open!
     
  3. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Thank you my friend!
    I can't help asking you how on earth you managed to post such beautiful pics on the Aviva Open when you were elsewhere (in Manila, I believe) during the tournament? ;)
     
  4. sunzhi

    sunzhi Regular Member

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    nice sum up there loh.. a few more pics to add...
     

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  5. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Impressions 2

    Technical & Related Aspects

    Unfortunately, I spent most of my time at the venue itself and I could not find fault with what I saw in general. The sound system was good, the graphics and info supplied on two big screens were helpful. The background info on the players was also useful and an attempt had been to show the points scored over time in graphic form. However, they have not found a reliable system to record the speed of the smash.

    There were two live telecast days for the semi-finals and finals. But having viewed a little of the recording of the proceedings and sunshi's pics on TV, I think they have improved on their camera techniques and graphics. They have also done some homework to provide TV viewers with some background introductory information like the ranking of the players, their head-to-head meetings, their journey to the final, their past performance at the world stage, etc. There were also charts and graphics to provide a more varied presentation.

    At the venue itself, many cameras were at work. Two cameras were on either end of the baseline to determine the landing "in or out" of the shuttlecock. One tiny one was placed at net height to amplify the movement of net shots in slow motion. Two cameramen were pointing their equipment on players at either side of the court for close-ups and lateral or horizontal shootings. At one corner of the court another cameraman was on hand. And overhead, in a special room high above the spectators, yet another camera was working constantly.

    But the commentary over TV was nothing spectacular or interesting. I believe the commentator is a generalist and is not particularly proficient in the badminton game, in my opinion. I did not see any interviews nor invitations to players to comment on the proceedings. But as I've said I haven't quite gone through all the recorded tapes yet.

    I believe that the reporters' needs had been adequately satisfied.

    The following pics show some details of the camera scene and the graphics appearing on the big screens:
     

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  6. Wong8Egg

    Wong8Egg Regular Member

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    It is amazing just by seeing these pictures. I am dreaming that if Toronto could ever host one badminton tournament like the SP open, and I definitely would go. :eek:
     
  7. magical_phoenix

    magical_phoenix Regular Member

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    Extremely good coverage, Loh! It is almost the same as my impression of the tournament.

    I've only been at two badminton championships so far, but I can tell that compared to Indonesia Open, Aviva Singapore Open is much better in almost all aspects. First of all, the stadium is much cleaner (not much to say about that because Singapore is generally extremely clean). Second of all, the whole tournament is much better organised and it's way more creative. I was so much impressed by the background information of all the semifinalists and finalists on the two big screens inside the stadium. It was very useful and, in my opinion, they were really putting effort in giving the best to all the spectators. On the final day, there was even a MC, and it made the whole thing more exciting. He made the audience feel more into the tournament by letting us having some fun with all the bangers. They even hired drummers to heaten things up.

    All in all, this year's SG Open is one of the best experiences in my life. If it is possible, I wouldn't hesitate to visit the same event next year!!!
     
  8. DaN_fAn

    DaN_fAn Regular Member

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    Nice description of the SO 2005 Loh.

    I have the same views and in one word the SO can be described as a grand success due to it's total 'proffesionalism'
     
  9. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    I'm so glad you enjoyed yourself and we certainly look forward to your next visit. :p
     
  10. LingDan

    LingDan Regular Member

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    One thing bad which is not mentioned is the organiser reserved all the good view seats to those corporate package audience. And worse is they don't turn up and those seats were empty.

    The organiser should not indicate free seating next time if they want to do that if not sell those tickets at different price for different view like concerts.
     
  11. storkbill

    storkbill Regular Member

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    for the finals, i think the corporate seats were mostly taken up so can't complain, but the semi-finals and earlier it was far worse, with entire sections of good seats totally empty.

    is there someone we can give feedback to on this?
     
  12. LingDan

    LingDan Regular Member

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    Which is why I am so piss off and rather stay at home to watch TV on the final even though I purchased the season ticket.:mad:
     
  13. jurong_twister

    jurong_twister Regular Member

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    RESERVED SEATS

    the media take too much spaces at good view seats at court 3. most of the time there isnt even any single journalist doing their job. some are sleeping, some are browsing the net.

    PLAYERS

    too many imported players are playing for Singapore. it's killing their own citizen a chance to participate in Singapore Open.

    OVERALL

    I am very impressed with the improvement done by the organizer. It's just getting better and better.
     
  14. Shuttlebugs

    Shuttlebugs Regular Member

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    How were the line calls generally. I know this is generally an area of contention in every competition.
     
  15. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    Impressions 3

    Live Scores & Results

    Yes, this is perhaps the only source of valuable information that can satisfy the needs of badminton fans who can't make it to the venue or who are residing overseas and in different time zones. Many BF'ers have voiced their disappointment at not being able to access live scores of IBF events and some have suggested that the IBF should make it compulsory for organizers to provide this vital info in ENGLISH for the benefit of English-speaking fans. I agree.

    For this reason, I'm really grateful and happy that our SBA has consistently made this facility available for most of their tournaments. IBF events are a must and I think our BFers should have on complaint for the Singapore Open.

    Local Players' Performance

    Singapore is still in the process of building up a strong and reliable team. So it comes as no surprise that our players still come short of world standards, particularly our men in this tournament. Ronald Susilo was unfortunate to meet WR1 Lin Dan at such an early stage in R3. But his recent recovery from injury and his stout battle against Lin that was punctuated with long rallies which prolonged the entire straight games match for 55 min, somehow give hope that Ronald can only do better. Don't forget he beat much higher ranked Wong Choong Hann in R2. However, our young trainees were given the opportunity to experience the demands of such high quality tournaments and this should benefit them in the long run.

    So tough is this Singapore Open that like Ronald, other popular names such as Boonsak, Sony, Hafiz, Chong Wei and Chen Yu failed to make the QF.

    Our girls fared much better. Of particular mention must be 15-year old Gu Juan who managed to qualify for the Main Draw by eliminating even Wong Mew Choo, Malaysia's No.1 in the WS. But Gu eventually got a free lesson in professional badminton when she was thrashed by Zhou Mi in R1, obtaining only 3 points in both games in 27 min.

    Li Li did better taking a game off Zhou Mi in R2, 1-11, 13-11, 4-11 in 60 min. Even WR1 Xie Xingfang lost to Zhou in the QF in straight games! I hope Li Li has now gained more confidence and belief in herself. And last year's US Open Champion, Xing Aiying, surprised us by beating WR2 Zhang Ning in the second game 11-2 before losing the rubber and match in 32 min! Xing can be groomed to become an eventual champion at a higher level. :)

    Our reliable XD pair of Saputra & Li was unfortunate to meet England's top pair of Robertson & Emms in R1, but they gave the English a scare before going down 10-15, 15-6, 6-15 in 60 min.

    There is hope yet in Singapore Badminton but more time is needed!


    Most Memorable Match

    The Taufik Hidayat versus Peter Gade QF match should be the match for the finals and indeed for the entire tournament!

    It was totally absorbing, tactically intriguing, technically superior, enery sapping, no quarter given, neither was it sought - the men's singles game played to an unbelievable highest level. Such was the tenacity and total concentration of these two world class gladiators that they could only part company after hugging each other emotionally towards the end which came after 95 min on court. I've never watched such beautify badminton like this one for a long time! ;)

    The result - Taufik, seeded 8, won 15-13, 17-15 after Gade, seeded 3, allowed him to claw back from a huge deficit during the second game! So Gade himself made the simplest error of not exerting more pressure on the tenacious Taufik to wrap up the second game quickly. :mad:

    Other Matches and Personalities of Mention

    XD Sudket Prapakamol & Sarelee Thungthon v Robertson & Emms

    The Thai Southeast Asia champions, seeded 6, created an upset in the QF by beating Olympic silver medalist Robertson & Emms, seeded 1, in 83 min in a hard-fought 4-15, 15-12, 15-11 but was unfortunate to lose to Olympic gold medalist Zhang Jun & Gao Ling, seeded 2, 15-10, 7-15, 5-15 in the final in 62 min. Certainly a pair to watch.

    MD Sigit Budiarto & Candra Wijaya v Boe & Mogensen

    The resurrection of Sigit & Candra seems to be on course for they managed to pip the young and talented Danes in the final, 8-15, 15-8, 15-7 in 84 min. Boe & Mogensen were so dominant in the first game that I thought it was all over for their older rivals. But experience showed and now that they have been playing together again for a longer period, Sigit and Candra never gave up and emerged winners in the end. But it is clear that Boe & Mogensen will be the ones to carry Denmark's torch into the future. :)

    Zhang Ning

    I've watched Zhang many times at the Singapaore Open and she never fails to impress me despite her maturing years! Certainly a good role-model for the young aspirant! Kudos to this Athens Olympic Champion!

    Fellow Picture Contributors

    I'm so happy to see a lot more postings of SO pics especially from sunshi, storkbill, netasia, ants and others. Thank you guys for your contributions. I can't forget meeting up in SIS with storkbill, who is new to BC, and confirming with him that photography without flash is allowed. He said he had to take time off from his office now and then to try to get into the best position just to take pics for the Forum with his impressive camera. Hopefully, next year will see more enthusiasts taking pics for BC. :)

    Some parting pics:
     

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  16. jurong_twister

    jurong_twister Regular Member

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    Ronald Susilo, Gu Juan, Li Li, Xing Aiyin, Saputra

    Frankly speaking, they are not local talent. They are Indonesia/China born imported players.
     
  17. Loh

    Loh Regular Member

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    :)
    Agree with you they are imported Foreign Talents to help raise the standards of our local badminton talents and so far, they are doing a good job. They have contributed to our success at regional and international levels and help to popularize the game at home. Ronald, Li Li and more recently Aiying, are Singapore citizens now and hopefully they will settle down and raise a family. Then their children will be thoroughbred Singaporeans - just like what most of our own forefathers did! :D

    Parents are now more open to their sports talented children taking up sports as a career. The Singapore Sports School is a start but it will take time to nurture and develop a truly professional sports community. Therefore, the short-cuts taken by the SBA and other NSAs as a whole is meant to fill in the gaps to allow time to play a part.

    I guess the SBA's strategy is to try to get them when they are young and provide the resources to train them to their highest potential so that they can in turn bring glory to Singapore. Of course, we still need to employ good foreign players to spar with our national squad as one avenue for further improving standards. Singapore is not alone in this game. Other countries less endowed with good local talent are also importing good players and coaches. Even Malaysia, a very strong badminton country, is employing Chinese, Korean and Indonesian coaches to help their players.

    If the effort is to help build a strong badminton fraternity, I don't see anything wrong in getting outside help. :)
     
  18. jurong_twister

    jurong_twister Regular Member

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    ;) ... i can feel that

    it's getting hard to book badminton courts during peak period nowadays. especially during school holiday.

    more ppl are attending and aware of Singapore Open.

    hopefully, SBA intention is to get badminton to be popular in Singapore and to help their real local talent NOT for a short cut to get a olympic medal.


    TICKET PRICE COMPLAIN

    Tickets pricing isnt controlled well by the organizer. Early internet booking cost SGD$19 (season ticket). The following week, ppl start selling at SGD$9.00 (season ticket). A week before tournament, ppl start selling at SGD$3.50 (season ticket). I just couldnt believe myself.
     
  19. kemana

    kemana Regular Member

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    what ?! it's like free:eek:
     
  20. DaN_fAn

    DaN_fAn Regular Member

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    I cant agree more.Live scoring was an important aspect.The Singapore open is aldready over and we are still talking about it.Compare this with the ongoing Malayasian Open ,no live results no pics no wonder everything is quiter as compared to a few days ago!
     

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