Sports

Viktor Axelsen takes swipe at Badminton World Federation's rules

Former world champion Viktor Axelsen has hit out at the Badminton World Federation (BWF)'s various policies.

Through six New Year resolutions posted on his Facebook account, the outspoken Dane highlighted issues that he hopes to resolve if he were to call the shots.

The world No. 5 questioned the hectic playing schedule, prize money distribution and umpire system, among others.

Top of the 25-year-old's list was his wish to see a lighter schedule for all shuttlers.

A rule that was implemented in 2018 made it compulsory for all the top 15 singles shuttlers to play in at least 12 World Tour tournaments a year, or face a fine of US$5,000 (S$6,700) for every event that they skip.

"Let's not push the players to play more tournaments. I'm sure players want to play but they skip a few to take care of their body, " he wrote.

Axelsen, who can also speak Mandarin, added that he would want the prize money to be paid directly to the players and not through their respective federations.

"The players appreciate all the help they get from their federation.

"But it's the players' money. Not anyone's else. Give the prize money directly to the players and not the federation."

He also hopes that the world body professionalise the umpires and introduce Hawk-eye system on all courts in the fourth-tier (Super 500) tournaments and above.

"Let's make the umpires professional and pay them a fair salary so that the best umpires can travel around to the biggest events, " said Axelsen.

"There are many good umpires, but there are those without much experience too. Let's get Hawk-eye on all courts from the fourth tier onwards."

Axelsen will be in action at the Malaysia Masters next week, with Singapore's Loh Kean Yew and Yeo Jia Min also set to take part.

OTHER SPORTS