Ghana will host the JE Wilson International badminton series from July 18 to 21 at the Trust Sports Emporium in Accra.
The tournament is one of the exclusive international tournaments under the sanctioned patronage of the Badminton World Federation, where badminton is gradually becoming a very important part of Ghanaian sports culture.
Twenty-seven countries from Vietnam, India, Luxemburg, Italy, Iceland, USA, Togo, Thailand, Switzerland, Malaysia, Egypt, Uganda, Slovakia, Maldives, Nigeria, Azerbaijan, Czech Republic, Australia, Iran, Portugal, Israel, Poland, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Benin, Pakistan and Ghana will be taking part.
Badminton, which was considered a sport with a great future by experts, has become more important when it was upgraded to an Olympic Sport in 1992. The sport has been attracting over millions of spectators each year and closes the attention of international press and media.
Ghana is privileged to host the 2019 International Olympic qualifier in Accra, Bukom Square, at the Trust Sports Emporium with 27 countries and 101 international Olympic players participating, with 46 foreign officials scheduled for July 18 to July 21.
It is the only Olympic qualifier to be hosted in Ghana with international appeal and recognition with prize money worth more than $10,000.
The Accra tournament‒ together with the Nigeria International Challenge, the Uganda International and the Egypt International Series‒ is seen as one of the most important events in Africa.
Evans Yeboah, president of the Ghana Badminton said, “Since the best players from all over the world are expected to compete, government’s support in its entirety would help us organise the event in a befitting Ghana manner.”
He added, “It is in view of this that the Ghana Badminton Association (GBA) would like to partner companies and allow them make use of and tap in to the values and results made by Ghana badminton over the past 45 years and welcome all Ghanaians and the diplomatic community to cheer their players and officials.”
The event is driven by the Ministry of Youth of Sports, Ghana Tourism Authority, the Ghana Olympic Committee and the Ghana Badminton Association.
STORY BY Sammy Heywood Okine