Badminton in the Olympics
The sport of badminton was forever changed when, in June 1985, the International Olympic Committee recognized the sportís magnitude (the IBF has 129 member countries) and voted unanimously to promote badminton to full-medal Olympic status. After having been a demonstration sport at the 1972 Olympics in Munich and an exhibition sport in 1988 in Seoul, badminton made a hugely successful full-medal debut at the Games of the XXVth Olympiad in Barcelona in 1992.
Badmintonís worldwide popularity was proven during the 1992 Olympics, when an estimated 1.1 billion viewers around the globe watched the eight-day inaugural badminton competition on television.
As expected, Asian countries took top honors at badmintonís Olympic debut. Indonesia, a nation that had never won an Olympic gold medal, took home the menís singles gold, silver, and bronze; womenís singles gold; and menís doubles silver medals in badminton. Malaysia won its first-ever Olympic medal, a bronze in menís doubles.
The United Statesí first Olympic badminton team consisted of its top six athletes -- three men and three women. In 1996, the USBA looks forward to improving upon its Olympic performance in Barcelona, in which U.S. athletes reached the second round of play.
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