The eight female Olympic badminton players initially charged with misconduct for intentionally trying to lose matches were disqualified Thursday, The Associated Press reports.
The four doubles teams attempted to throw their matches by serving into the net or out of bounds in order to obtain a more favorable draw in later matches.
The players include China’s world champions Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang, Indonesia’s Greysia Polii and Meiliana Jauhari and two South Korean doubles teams — Jung Kyung-eun and Kim Ha-na, and Ha Jung-eun and Kim Min Jung.
After the disqualification, defending Olympic champion Yu Yang of China announced her retirement from badminton on her verified account on the Tencent microblogging service, the AP reports. “This is my last game,” she posted. “Farewell Badminton World Federation. Farewell my dear badminton.”
“The pairs have been charged … with ‘not using one’s best efforts to win a match’ and ‘conducting oneself in a manner that is clearly abusive or detrimental to the sport’,” the Badminton Federation said in a statement Wednesday.
In the China vs. South Korea match Tuesday, both teams appeared to be trying to lose. Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang wore yellow and Ha Jung-eun and Kim Min Jung sported purple.
South Korea serves the birdie into the net.
China returns the favor by also serving into the net.
To switch it up, South Korea serves so the birdie intentionally lands out of bounds.
The judge catches onto the teams’ strategy and gives them a warning.
But the players ignore him and go back to serving into the net one point later.