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Badminton body extends ‘spin serve’ ban until after Paris Olympic Games

Badminton’s governing body is extending its ban on the so-called “spin serve” until after the Paris 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games, it said on Monday.

The new style of serving involves a player spinning the shuttlecock before launching it, making it difficult for the opponent to return.  

In May, the Badminton World Federation (BWF) temporarily banned this style of serve, citing the the possibility for disruption to the game.  

“After consultation with the badminton community, BWF Council believed it best to forbid the ‘spin serve’ for another 15 months so as to not impact the Olympic and Paralympic qualifying periods and the Games themselves,” the sport’s organising body said in a statement on Monday. 

BWF Secretary General Thomas Lund welcomed “innovation in badminton” but added that “more evidence was needed on the potential effects” of the serve before introducing it full scale.

The ruling will be applied at the Thailand Open 2023 starting Tuesday, BWF said.

In supporting the ban, Badminton Association of Malaysia secretary-general Kenny Goh had previously said the serve could “kill” the game.

Receiving players would find it difficult to handle an incoming bird as the method creates “an irregular flight, so sometimes the feather would go in front instead,” he told AFP.

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