Saturday January 26, 2013
Atlanta champion Hoyer-Larsen in the running for BWF top job
KUALA LUMPUR: The contest for the Badminton World Federation (BWF) president post is surely heating up.
Just a week after Malaysia’s Datuk Seri Nadzmi Mohd Salleh announced his decision to stand for election during the Malaysian Open at Putra Stadium in Bukit Jalil, Denmark’s former 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games singles champion Poul-Erik Hoyer-Larsen has now joined the race to make it an intriguing election affair in May.
The BWF’s Annual General Meeting (AGM) will take place during the Sudirman Cup at Putra Stadium from May 19-26.
With his decision yesterday, the challenge for the post now has become a three-cornered fight. The other candidate is Indonesia’s Justian Suhandinata. The popular and well respected Dane is currently the president of Badminton Europe and has done well to promote the game in Europe.
His decision, however, is a surprise as he said during the Denmark Open in Odense last October that he did not want to stand for the post as he wanted to do more at the ground level to spread the interest of the game in the European region.
However, yesterday, in a press statement, the 47-year-old Hoyer-Larsen said that he had a change of heart when there were calls from all over the world urging him to go for the post after the current BWF president Dr Kang Young-joong decided against seeking re-election.
“I want to lead the BWF in the same spirit as today (under the helm of Kang-young) and ensure an open dialogue with key stakeholders,” said the Dane, who also serves the National Olympic Committee in Denmark.
“I represent unity in the badminton world as I believe that we need strong cooperation to compete against other sports. Our prime target must be to enhance badminton’s status as an Olympic sport and with my profile I believe I can contribute to badminton’s Olympic aspirations.”
About his chances winning the BWF post, Hoyer-Larsen said: “I would not seek election if I was not convinced of my ability to lead the BWF and if I had not received so many strong encouragement. My background as continental president (since 2010) and my excellent relationship with my colleagues and our members.”
The closing date for BWF office bearers’ nomination is Feb 22.