Seniors Championship - Tour, Europe & World

Discussion in 'General Forum' started by LenaicM, Aug 4, 2019.

  1. LenaicM

    LenaicM Regular Member

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    I recently discovered there was a badminton Seniors / Veteran Tour. Although there are just a few dates (only held in Europe, calendar link HERE) there is also a European Championship and a World Championship held every two years.

    I didnt find any senior Asian championship or official BWF veteran event in Asia.

    The World Seniors Championship is currently ongoing and there are many different categories classified per age from 35 to 75+. The level is not always amazing from what I've seen so far even in the youngest categories. Yet it's always different on tv than it is on court.

    As a player who started badminton late (32-year-old), I won't pretend I can become a pro obviously but I like to give myself realistic yet big goals in order to aim higher and motivate myself as much as possible. I wanted to know if anyone already had the experience of this veteran Tour or European / World championship and how is the level on court. Are the players former pros?

    Obviously I don't plan on becoming a veteran champion but just the thought of participating in a few years (if I keep improving) is thrilling enough!
     
  2. phihag

    phihag Regular Member

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    You tend not to find the pros in O35 or O40. Many O50+ players can tell stories about their former glories. I guess the community was smaller and more amateurish in these times.
    I guess after competing in the very top tournaments, the senior championships are a step down. Plus, players peak at a different time in their life; some former champions stop playing, whereas others manage to stay very fit up to high ages.

    Top players in O35 are roughly as good as the the best U17 players in European countries or the very best U15 players internationally. In Germany, with a league system, we'd rank them in the middle to lower second league. In the very high age groups – O70 and O75 – there is not much competition (especially in the Women's disciplines), but in the other groups, the participants must have won a competitive regional and national tournament, so you will certainly not see any beginners.

    Starting at ~O45, the playing style becomes different. Players prepare for diligently for the opponents, and play quite clever. Everybody has a very strong backhand; because they can't move that fast anymore that's a requirement to win. The difference between the good and the best players is often fitness, especially in the older age groups. It's the opposite to the stereotypical youth player who must often be pushed by their coach to warm up at all, and whose movement tends to be better than the shot technique and tactics, and whose mental game and strategy is nonexistent.

    Some fun facts about Seniors championships: Because the officials in the national federation tend to be active players in the senior tournaments (at least on a regional and national level), they are usually a really sweet deal. My regional O35+ championship is the only tournament in that region where shuttles are handed out by the umpires.

    There is a relaxed atmosphere, even at very high levels. On the court people compete as always, but in the stands there is a lot of catching up, reminiscing and laughing. Many players come with a caravan. Entries from different countries are not unusual, as you tend to know everybody in your age group. If you need to talk to some federation or club official, the national senior championships are the best place to meet them.

    These tournaments are absolutely gigantic. The current World Senior Championships sports 1860 entries and 1509 players. Frequently, it is played in 2 halls. Minimum requirement is 12 courts. And still, the tournament takes 7 days (some players do compete in all 3 disciplines though). The victory ceremonies alone can easily take hours, even if it is done quickly. International umpires have a minimum number of matches they have to umpire per year; I've heard stories that some managed to reach this number at a single seniors tournament.
     
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  3. LenaicM

    LenaicM Regular Member

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    Thank you so much for all these information and feedbacks! Well it sounds like entering a senior tournament in the future isn't impossible even for a player like me who started at 32. It also looks like it could be a lot of fun according to your message. Although I wouldn't pretend to enter any of those before a couple more years (I'm not a senior yet anyway) of training but that's one dream I can try to aim for since I started too late! :cool:

    I actually found a participant from France and looked it up in the French rankings and his level doesn't seems to be too spectacular, although he still have a regional level, so obviously one needs to have some serious skills to pretend entering a senior tournament but it's doable I'd say. I'll make this a goal of mine for the next 3 to 5 years!
     
  4. Ballschubser

    Ballschubser Regular Member

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    Currently one player of our club participates at the bwf senior championship. As far as I know she never played at pro-level, thought I don't know at what class she played before. To participate you needed to be one of the top 3 winners in the national campionship here (germany).

    Think about this way: pro players will pay with their health to compete at this high-level. When you are 35+, how long will you be able to continue ? At 35+ you will meet a lot of players who played at a very high national level, at 60+ it will be more mixed up.
     
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