The Badminton World Federation (BWF) has issued an interim ban on the use of the “Spin Serve” in international badminton tournaments. This decision comes after the “unreturnable” serve caught the attention of the world’s top badminton players, with many believing that it can give an unfair advantage to players. Danish doubles player Marcus Rindshoj was the first to start using this serve at the Polish Open last month and gained several points with it.
Interim ban effective immediately
The BWF Council has approved a proposal for an “experimental variation” to the Laws of Badminton, which prohibits the use of the new “spin serve” immediately until May 29, 2023. This interim ban will apply to all BWF sanctioned international tournaments, including the BWF Sudirman Cup Finals 2023, starting from May 14, 2023, and the Malaysia Masters 2023, the following week. Any failure to comply with this rule will result in a fault being called.
Negative impact on the game
According to BWF President Poul-Erik Høyer, the “spin serve” could have a negative impact on the game. He explained that the organization welcomes players who create innovation and experiment with techniques to gain a competitive advantage on the court. However, they received feedback from the badminton community, including the BWF Athletes’ Commission, expressing concern that this serve could have a negative impact on the game.
Expert panel recommended to disallow “Spin Serve”
The “Spin Serve” has many similar characteristics to the “Sidek serve,” which is not allowed. As such, an expert panel recommended disallowing the “Spin Serve” until further consultation could take place with the membership at the upcoming BWF AGM on May 27, 2023. The BWF Council decided to impose this experimental variation to disallow the “Spin Serve” until May 29, 2023, when they will convene again for further discussion and deliberation.
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