Anna Ronald appointed as Financial Controller

Badminton Australia is delighted to announce the appointment of Anna Ronald (FCPA) as the organisation’s new Financial Controller.

Anna joins Badminton Australia with more than 20 years of accounting experience within the sports and not-for-profit sectors in both Australia and the UK. Anna’s financial expertise in sport includes working in cricket, rowing and baseball, in addition to managing her own practice.

Badminton Australia Chief Executive Officer Tjitte Weistra said: “Anna’s knowledge and proven record of success within the sports industry will be highly advantageous to the future financial operations of Badminton Australia. We welcome Anna to our team and look forward to her contributions.”

Anna’s qualifications include a Bsc (Hons) in Applied Accounting, as well as being a CPA Public Practitioner and Registered Tax Agent.

“I am thrilled for this opportunity to join Badminton Australia and equally excited to use my knowledge of the finance and sports industries to ensure badminton continues to grow in Australia,” she said.

“I’m really looking forward to joining the team at BA, and starting a new chapter in my sports industry career.”

TJ Weistra thanked outgoing Financial Controller Anita Barbuto for her commitment to Badminton Australia.

“Anita had been an integral part of our organisation for many years, has been instrumental in the implementation of very robust finance practices and we thank her for the high-level of professionalism and dedication to the role,” he said.

“We will miss Anita and wish her nothing but the very best for the future.”

Media Contact: Anthony Pinda (Event and Communications Manager) for any further enquiries.

M: 0417 378 993 E: Anthony.pinda@badminton.org.au

Australia sends record contingent to NSDF Royal Beach Cliff BWF Para Badminton World Championships 2024

There’s plenty on the line this week in Thailand for the Australians competing at the NSDF Royal Beach Cliff BWF Para Badminton World Championships.

The record 14-strong squad is the biggest Australian contingent to ever attend the Championships which begins on Tuesday in Pattaya.

The Australian team includes a mixture of youth and experience, with some athletes making their World Championship debut, while for others it marks their fourth time competing.

As we draw closer to the Paris 2024 Paralympic Games, this event also stands as the final opportunity to amass crucial world ranking points for the Race to Paris.

“Qualifying for World Championships is a big deal, and for many, a dream come true,” said Badminton Australia CEO, Tjitte Weistra.

“Having the largest contingent of Australian players attend tournament is a sign of the growth of para badminton in Australia, particularly in recent years.”

Badminton Australia General Manager Participation and Para, Clare Walker said the size of the team was testament to the support which the para badminton program had received.

“With the support of the Australian Institute of Sport and Paralympics Australia, we are able to offer opportunities such as development camps for players to come together and train,” Walker said.

“By encouraging participation at grassroots, we have forged a strong partnership with Disability Sports Australia to deliver badminton through its Abilities Unleashed multi-sport days, in addition to what States and Territories offer.

“There is still a long way to go to develop para badminton in Australia, however, Badminton Australia with our partners is committed to continuing to work towards an even stronger program in the future.”

Matches/Results: https://bit.ly/42Rih7J

Australian Players:

  • Martyn Ford https://bit.ly/49FRq0q
    • Men’s Singles WH1
    • Mixed Doubles WH1 WH2 (with Shaimaa Samy Abdellatif [EGY])
    • Men’s Doubles WH1 WH2 (with Grant Manzoney)
  • Mischa Ginns https://bit.ly/3wf9osk
    • Women’s Singles WH2
    • Women’s Doubles WH1 WH2 (with Yuka Chokyu [CAN])
  • Lachlan Boulton https://bit.ly/48p7e6K
    • Men’s Singles SL4
    • Mixed Doubles SL3 SU5 (with Zashka Gunson)
    • Men’s Doubles SL3 SL4 (with Kenneth Adlawan)
  • Zashka Gunson https://bit.ly/48l5JXw
    • Women’s Singles SL4
    • Women’s Doubles SL3 SU5 (with Celine Vinot)
    • Mixed Doubles SL3 SU5 (with Lachlan Boulton)
  • Caitlin Dransfield https://bit.ly/3wvcwjR
    • Women’s Singles SL4
    • Women’s Doubles SL3 SU5 (with Amonrat Jamporn)
  • Amonrat Jamporn https://bit.ly/3wmt3Xo
    • Women’s Singles SL3
    • Women’s Doubles SL3 SU5 (with Caitlin Dransfield)

Australian Officials in attendance include Badminton Australia CEO Tjitte Weistra, National Para Badminton Head Coach Ian Bridge, Team Manager and Physiotherapist Pinakin Godse, and Abigail Rothery who is in attendance as a Development Coach.

Stephen Hadlow from Paralympics Australia has also travelled to Thailand and will be working with a remote VIS analyst to gather insights for targeted athletes with the potential to simulate anticipated set-ups that will be implemented as part of the Paris Performance Analysis Hub.

Stay tuned to Badminton Australia’s social media channels throughout the week for more content and updates from all the action in Thailand.

Danish star Anders Antonsen arrives in Australia for sparring sessions with the Falcons

Badminton Australia welcomes world top-10 Danish Men’s Singles player Anders Antonsen who is spending time in Australia during the lead up to the start of his 2024 season.

Anders will be in the country for a few weeks of training ahead of his next tournament, the PETRONAS Malaysian Open in January.

“Australia is very far from Denmark, but since I had just finished competing at a tournament in Asia (HSBC BWF World Tour Finals 2023) and will be playing in Asia again in early January, it made sense to have a stopover here,” he said.

“It’s one of the aspects I love about being a badminton player, having the opportunity to travel to new countries and exploring different cultures and cuisines.

“I am really into food and coffee, and I’ve heard that Melbourne is a great place for it.”

Anders Antonsen secured a Bronze Medal in the Men’s Singles at the World Tour Finals 2023.

Anders had a strong year on court in 2023 which included a Bronze Medal at the BWF World Championships on home soil in Denmark, Gold at the Korea Open and another Bronze just recently at the BWF World Tour Finals in China.

While in the country Anders will spend time on court sparring against Australian Falcons, which began with a session with Ricky Tang earlier in the week.

“It was a light session today, but we will definitely increase as the week progresses,” Anders said.

“Hopefully the players will have some great sessions and I will do my best to help them on court. I am grateful for them coming down to play.”

Ricky was the first Falcon to step on court with Anders on Tuesday morning and embraced every minute of the experience.

“It was an honour to train with Anders and his coach. I was a bit nervous coming into the session, but they were very welcoming and helpful,” Ricky said.

Ricky Tang in action at the Sathio Group Australian Badminton Open.

“I feel like I’ve taken a lot away from the session. It was fantastic to gain first-hand experience of the European style of training and be a part of his preparations before he competes in Malaysia.”

Ricky also had a standout year on court, which included Gold in the Men’s Singles at the YONEX National Championships in Bendigo, in addition to his Australian Sudirman Cup squad debut in China.

His next tournament is the VICTOR Badminton Oceania Championships where he will be in action in both the Men’s Team Championship and Individuals.

National Head Coach Leanne Choo said training with Anders presented a unique experience for the Australian players.

“We are thrilled that Anders has chosen to come to Australia to train in the lead-up to the PETRONAS Malaysian Open in January,” Leanne said.

“While in the country he will be sparring with some of the Australian Falcons, which for them is an incredible opportunity.

“They will have the chance to learn from a world top-10 singles player who will no doubt challenge them, while also provide a great insight into how they can improve their own performances on court.

“Overall, we hope he enjoys his time with us, and we look forward to working with him.”

Anders Antonsen and Coach Joachim Persson at the World Tour Finals 2023

Anders’ passion for badminton extends far beyond just competitive play as he is dedicated to promoting the sport and creating content to reach greater audiences.

Part of this involves hosting a podcast with fellow Danish player Hans-Kristian Vittinghus called The Badminton Experience.

“I’ve always been into creating content and I enjoy following sports that are good at branding,” Anders said.

“Creating a podcast was just another way to do something fun that was related to badminton. On the podcast we talk about all things badminton amongst ourselves and sometimes we invite other players onto the show.

“I have been travelling a lot lately which makes it hard to release content consistently, but I am trying my best to get more content out in the future.”

 

Junior Falcons make the most of world-class training and tournament experience in Thailand

Junior Falcons recently travelled to Thailand to attend the Badminton Oceania Player Development Program where they visited world-class training facilities and competed in an elite tournament.

The Junior Falcons and coach representing Badminton Australia Tom Champion spent the week training at the Banthongyord Badminton School in Bangkok before they competed at the BAT YONEX Pathumthani Junior International Series.

Champion said it was a fantastic opportunity for the Australian athletes to have a glimpse into life at one of Thailand’s most elite badminton academies.

“Our players were very excited to have the chance to train at Banthongyord’s world class facilities, which naturally brought on some nerves,” he said.

“However, they embraced the challenge of daily three hour on-court sessions followed by two hours of physical training. Both their minds and bodies adapted fantastically after a couple of days.

“Everything was great. The coaches were all very welcoming, which ensured our players were a part of it all and helped them get straight to work.”

One of the most eye-opening elements of attending the camp for both Champion and the players was seeing how international players approach training programs.

“The culture and mindset brought to the court by the Banthongyord players definitely stood out the most,” Champion said.

“Every session they are early, start their own warm up and conduct the same routine together as a team.

“The moment they step on court their intensity performing drills or competing against their teammates is just like a tournament, but as soon as they’re off the court, it’s back to the supportive and motivating attitude of each other.

“Cool downs all conducted together and done properly each time. The mentality that each Banthongyord player brings to each on-court and physical session allows them to get the most out of it and make great improvements to their all-round game.”

Following the week at Banthongyord, it was then time to put the experience into action at the BAT YONEX Pathumthani Junior International Series where there were players from across the world in contention.

View all the results here: https://bwf.tournamentsoftware.com/tournament/18e3f9e4-73b2-4482-9c0b-0d8976f2c850

Above all, Champion said it was a highly memorable opportunity for both himself and the players.

“We are all extremely grateful for the experience and proud to represent both Australia and Oceania in one of the best badminton nations in the world,” he said.

Badminton Australia National Performance Manager Brent Miller said the Program in Thailand provided critical learning lessons for overall player development.

“These opportunities are very important for the development of our athletes as they present the chance to compete, train and socialise with players that they don’t usually have exposure to back in Australia,” he said.

“The ability to not only train but also compete was a great opportunity to develop different key areas of their game.”

 

Miller said the focus for the players was to now bring back the newfound knowledge to their training programs in Australia.

“We hope each athlete brings back their own individual learning lessons and can share these with their clubs, states, and fellow Falcons,” he said.

“On an individual level the new skills are both technical and tactical, but also the experience of traveling and playing on the international stage for many of them was their first event overseas.

“They now understand what it takes to perform at this level and can take responsibility for themselves.”

Team Selection Announcement for Thomas and Uber Cup Qualifiers

Badminton Australia is thrilled to announce the team selections for the Oceania region TotalEnergies BWF Thomas and Uber Cup Qualifiers.

Falcons will travel to Geelong, Victoria from February 16-18 to compete in the VICTOR Oceania Men’s and Women’s Team Championships where they will take on the best players from across the region.

The winner of the Men’s and Women’s Team Championships in Geelong will then represent Oceania at the prestigious TotalEnergies BWF Thomas and Uber Cup Finals in Chengdu, China in April.

The teams have been chosen by the BA Selectors Panel in line with the Badminton Australia Selection Policy.

Uber Cup (Women’s Team Championship)

  • Tiffany Ho (NBC – NSW)
  • Kaitlyn Ea (2G Sports – VIC)
  • Gronya Somerville (BadFit – VIC)
  • Angela Yu (Sunnybank Hills BC – QLD)
  • Setyana Mapasa (Roketto – NSW)
  • Bernice Teoh (An-Yu BC – WA)
  • Sydney Tjonadi (Roketto – NSW)
  • Isabella Yan (NBC – NSW)
  • Dania Nugroho (SPOC -SA)
  • Catrina Tan (Sturt – SA)

Thomas Cup (Men’s Team Championship)

  • Nathan Tang (Ming Badminton Academy – VIC)
  • Kenneth Choo (GWBC – VIC)
  • Jacob Schueler (Ocean Grove BC – VIC)
  • Jack Yu (Sunnybank Hills BC – QLD)
  • Rayne Wang (MUBC – VIC)
  • Ricky Tang (DASH – NSW)
  • Shrey Dhand (Play Badminton – VIC)
  • Frederick Zhao (PBA – VIC)
  • Asher Ooi (Sydney Jets – NSW)
  • Jordan Yang (WSBA – VIC)

Badminton Australia CEO Tjitte (TJ) Weistra congratulated all players on their selections.

“It’s an incredible honour for an athlete to have the opportunity to represent their country in a team event,” he said.

“These players have put in endless hours of hard work both on and off the badminton court and now it’s their time to put their effort into action at the Thomas and Uber Cup Qualifiers.

“Congratulations to all of the players and we can’t wait to watch you on court in Geelong.”

The VICTOR Oceania Men’s and Women’s Team Championships will be held after the VICTOR Oceania Open Individual Championships (February 12-15).

The Thomas Cup was first held in 1949 and has been won a record 14 times by Indonesia, although India is the current champion after defeating Indonesia 3-0 during the 2022 edition in Bangkok, Thailand.

The Uber Cup’s history commenced in 1957 and has been won a record 15 times by China, however, at the 2022 tournament South Korea defeated China 3-2 to claim its second title.

Also announced this week was the reselection of the Junior Falcons with the Senior Falcons being reselected at the conclusion of the Oceania Championships in February.

  • View the Junior Falcons here.
  • View the Senior Falcons here.

Badminton Australia also recently announced the athletes that will form the 2023/24 National Para Badminton Falcons Program.

 

Badminton Association of Western Australia to host 2024 YONEX Australian U15 and U19 National Championships

Badminton Australia is thrilled to announce that the Badminton Association of Western Australia has been awarded the hosting rights for the 2024 YONEX Australian U15/U19 National Championships.

Junior teams from across Australia will compete at Perth’s Kingsway Indoor Stadium in the City of Wanneroo from Tuesday July 9 – Sunday July 14 for the CP Maddern Trophy (U19) and the Val Nesbitt Trophy (U15) before they contend the Individual events.

Badminton Australia CEO Tjitte Weistra expressed his excitement to hold a National Championship event in Western Australia.

“The level of talent and skill across our junior players in Australia ensures that the YONEX Australian U15/U19 National Championships are going to be a highly successful event,” he said.

“We are delighted to partner with BAWA to host the 2024 edition of the tournament as they are a proud badminton state and are passionate about the growth of our sport.

“After the thrilling matches at the 2023 U15/U19 Nationals, we can’t wait to head over to Perth next year to see all the players in action.

“We are very pleased to once again have the support of YONEX who are on board for 2024 as the event’s major sponsor.”

The Badminton Association of WA was formed in 1924 and became affiliated with the then Badminton Association of Australia in 1936.

The organisation built its own badminton-specific headquarters in 1962, the first Australian association to take this step, and the Wembley Centre was officially opened in 1964. This stadium hosted numerous national and international events, until it was sold in 2000.  The Badminton Association of WA then moved to its new headquarters at the Kingsway Indoor Stadium located in the City of Wanneroo.

Badminton Association of Western Australia President Judith Cousins was thrilled the event coincided with BAWA’s 100th anniversary.

“Western Australia has a proud place in the history of badminton, with the sport being played for the first time in 1900 in Fremantle,” she said.

“As we celebrate the 100th year of Badminton WA, this national event will be a highlight.”

BAWA Executive Officer Ghaz Ramli was excited to see a National Championship event return to Western Australia.

“The welcome news that we are the chosen hosts for the prestigious 2024 YONEX Australian U15/U19 National Championship event has been received with great interest and considerable excitement from our cohort of young players and their parents,” he said.

“It will be five years since WA last hosted a national and with a strong background in hosting quality competitions this event will showcase badminton in WA as well as the opportunity for our state to welcome junior players, accompanying officials and families to Perth.

“Badminton is a very popular sport in Western Australia and the state has produced many champions who started their careers at a junior national event, and went on to represent Australia at the International level.”

During the 2023 running of the event in South Australia, New South Wales claimed the prestigious CP Maddern Trophy while Victoria triumphed to lift the Val Nesbitt Trophy after a 6-2 win over Western Australia.

In addition, Western Australian Mimi Ngo won gold in the U15 GS, U15 GD and U15 MD.

2023 Individual Winners:

U15 – BS: Om Neelam (VIC), GS: Mimi Ngo (WA), BD: Om Neelam (VIC)/Aneesh Nirmal (QLD), GD: Tanvi Sai Mushini (VIC)/Mimi Ngo (WA) and XD: Om Neelam (VIC)/Mimi Ngo (WA)

U19: – MS: Asher Ooi (NSW), WS: Isabella Yan (NSW), MD: Jordan Yang/Frederick Zhao (VIC), WD: Dania Nugroho/Catrina Tan (SA), XD: Jordan Yang (VIC)/Sydney Tjonadi (NSW)

For any further media enquiries, interviews with BA or BAWA staff, please contact BA Events and Communications Manager Anthony.pinda@badminton.au.

 

 

ATHLETES & SPORTS TO REAP REWARDS OF $4.8 million Green2Gold2Great investment

Australia’s athletes and the sports they represent are set to benefit from a $4.8 million injection by Commonwealth Games Australia (CGA).

The initial allocation of Green2Gold2Great investment in the lead up to the 2026 Commonwealth Games contributes to ensuring that our green and gold charges will be ready to put their best foot forward on the global stage.

Each of the 22 sports included on what was the Victoria 2026 sport programme will benefit, enabling the delivery of 37 performance initiatives geared toward 2026 success.

One such initiative is the Lanning v Perry Series of Cricket Australia, bringing together Australia’s best women’s under-19 aged cricketers for a series of T20 matches and workshops.

The experience was hosted in Brisbane late last month and forms part of the development pathway for the Australian women’s cricket team and selection to the Commonwealth Games.

“Green2Gold2Great funding is critical for us being able to run the Lanning v Perry series, and other experiences in our pathway. It helps to develop the next rung of players that could compete at the Commonwealth Games,” Shelley Nitschke, Australian women’s head coach, said.

“The Commonwealth Games are a big thing for Australia and to play cricket there would be a great opportunity. I’d welcome the chance to play at such a high level,” Amy Smith, Lanning v Perry Series participant, said.

A commitment of $13 million across the quadrennium to 2026, Green2Gold2Great is an investment in CGA’s aim of being the number one nation in terms of gold medals won, overall medals won, total number of medallists and the number of sports winning medals at the Commonwealth Games.

“The Games host may be unknown for now, but what’s guaranteed is our commitment to our athletes and sports as they prepare for 2026,” Craig Phillips AM, CGA Chief Executive Officer, said.

“We want our team to arrive ready to compete, with CGA funding complementing other performance investment to ensure athletes have the tools for success.”

Green2Gold2Great is made possible by the investments, sponsorship revenues and fundraising activities of CGA, including the marketing rights fee paid for the 2026 Games.

This initial contribution of $4.8 million announced today brings together Foundation and Performance allocations for each sport.

Foundation allocations are a per-head commitment to sports based on their forecast team size, with Performance allocations making specific performance initiatives, such as qualification competition and team camps, possible.

For more information, visit commonwealthgames.com.au.

Sport Foundation Performance TOTAL
Athletics $187,236 $261,450 $448,686
Badminton $22,290 $165,000 $187,290
Basketball (3X3) $35,664 $287,500 $323,164
Bowls $40,122 $180,000 $220,122
Boxing $24,519 $181,200 $205,719
Cricket (T20) $33,435 $110,450 $143,885
Cycling $86,931 $400,000 $486,931
Diving $28,977 $173,500 $202,477
Golf $8,916 $134,000 $142,916
Gymnastics (Artistic) $22,290 $171,500 $193,790
Hockey $80,244 $120,000 $200,244
Netball $26,748 $190,000 $216,748
Para Powerlifting $4,458 $52,160 $56,618
Rowing (Coastal) $8,916 $111,340 $120,256
Rugby (7s) $57,954 $145,400 $203,354
Shooting $35,664 $40,000 $75,664
Squash $17,832 $170,000 $187,832
Swimming $169,404 $286,000 $455,404
Table Tennis $31,206 $194,500 $225,706
Triathlon $13,374 $95,000 $108,374
Volleyball (Beach) $8,916 $145,000 $153,916
Weightlifting $17,832 $186,000 $203,832
TOTAL $962,928 $3,800,000 $4,762,928

Italics denotes sports which include para events.

Junior Falcons embrace elite opportunity at Australian Institute of Sport National Development Camp

Badminton Australia Junior Falcons recently refined their skills at a National Development Camp held at the Australian Institute of Sport in Canberra.

The aim of the four-day program was to develop and improve their skills on the badminton court, while simultaneously providing the athletes with the experience of attending an elite sports facility.

The camp couldn’t have come at a more crucial time as there’s also 10-strong squad of Junior Falcons who are heading to the USA this week to compete at the BWF World Junior Championships.

Badminton Australia Junior Coach Tom Champion said National Development Camps provided athletes with the all-round experience of being a professional badminton player.

“At the Australian Institute of Sport we have access to the leading figures in their respective fields and can absorb information they have to offer,” Champion said.

“Particularly for the World Junior Championships team, it’s a place where they can really make quick strides in all areas of their game, which will make a difference at major tournaments.

“The on-court sessions are intense and sparring against and with the best players can only happen at these camps. Off-court they can make quick adjustments to their routines which can have immediate positive impacts to their performances.”

The four-day camp was separated into different areas of focus:

The first day on campus in Canberra began with a formalisation session for the players to get accustomed to the venue by focusing on consistency and quality of each shot without playing under pressure from an opponent or feeder.

Day two started with a similar pace, however, as the on-court drills began to expand the focus shifted to improve player reaction times whilst maintaining the basis of their shot quality and fluid movement.

During the second part of the day players engaged in singles attack drills which allowed them the freedom to be as aggressive as possible to understand their offensive limits. The focus was to have a better understanding of what works and doesn’t work from an attacking shot success point of view. The secondary focus was the feeder, e.g., the defender had to ensure they defended with quality otherwise the worker (attacker) didn’t have a chance to succeed at the primary goal.

On day three the focal point shifted to stability and shot quality while defending in doubles to ensure players understood the best methods of converting defence into offence or at least remain neutral in the rally.

The afternoon session’s focus was purely on serving, return and the third shot in doubles by ensuring every shot was of the highest quality to build confidence from game scenarios.

The final day would see the players convert their newfound knowledge into action with a team tournament to replicate the atmosphere of a competition by splitting equal-ability teams with the focus of applying all of the on-court training learned at the Camp.

Each day the Falcons attended Educational, Strength & Conditioning and Recovery sessions conducted  by AIS staff members. The key focus for the players was to take the learnings from each session and understand how they can fit these into their weekly schedule.

Champion said when comparing the players’ knowledge from the start of the week to the last day “the consistency and creation of a positive culture of being a Junior Falcon was an aspect of the Camp they should all be very proud to have achieved together”.

“It’s now about using this energy and spirit back in their States and Clubs. Other players look up to the Falcons – it’s important they lead by example,” he said.

The learning lessons weren’t exclusive to the players, as the dedicated team of coaches also improved their skills.

“These camps are so valuable as I spent time with players that I normally wouldn’t coach on a daily/weekly basis,” Champion said.

“I developed a better understanding of how they best operate, what communication style leads to the best outcome and specifically I spent plenty of time setting goals and discussing areas of focus for when they return to training in their home states.

“Overall, it allowed me to be better educated as a coach of all national junior players.”