For Immediate Release
February 17, 2012
USA Badminton Teams Off to Strong Start at 2012 Thomas and Uber Cup Pan American Preliminary in El Monte, Calif.
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The USA Badminton Men’s and Women’s Teams got off to strong starts today in the first action of the 2012 Thomas and Uber Cup Pan American Preliminary tournament being held at the Los Angeles Badminton Club in El Monte, Calif., February 17-19, 2012. The winning men’s and women’s team from this event will advance to the 2012 Thomas and Uber Cup Finals which will be held May 20-27 in Wuhan, Hubei, China.
In the Uber Cup Preliminary play, the USA women’s team defeated Barbados by the score of 5-0. Iris Wang (Arcadia, Calif.), Rena Wang (Arcadia, Calif.) and Jamie Subandhi (Westminster, Calif.) all won their matches in women’s singles two games to none. The Wang sisters also won their women’s doubles match two games to none as did Eva Lee (Orange, Calif.) and Paula Lynn Obanana (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn./Mountain View, Calif.). The USA women will continue round robin play tomorrow with matches against Brazil and Puerto Rico.
In the Thomas Cup Preliminary play, the USA men’s team defeated both Puerto Rico and Jamaica five games to none. Sattawat Pongnairat (Orange, Calif.), Howard Shu (Anaheim, Calif.) and Nicholas Jinadasa (Long Beach, Calif.) played singles for the USA and were victorious versus both teams. Howard Bach (San Francisco, Calif./Anaheim, Calif.) and Tony Gunawan (West Covina, Calif.) easily won their men’s doubles match against Puerto Rico as did Phillip Chew (Orange, Calif.) and Pongnairat. For their match against Jamaica, Gunawan teamed with Chew and Bach with Jinadasa with the same victorious results. The USA men will continue their play in Pool B tomorrow against Guatemala.
The USA Badminton Uber Cup Team Roster:
Eva Lee (Orange, Calif.)
Paula Lynn Obanana (Minneapolis-St. Paul, Minn./Mountain View, Calif.)
Jamie Subandhi (Westminster, Calif.)
Iris Wang (Arcadia, Calif.)
Rena Wang (Arcadia, Calif.)
Head Coach: Zi Min Cai (Orange, Calif.)
The USA Badminton Thomas Cup Team Roster:
Howard Bach (San Francisco, Calif./Anaheim, Calif.)
Phillip Chew (Orange, Calif.)
Tony Gunawan (West Covina, Calif.)
Nicholas Jinadasa (Long Beach, Calif.)
Sattawat Pongnairat (Orange, Calif.)
Howard Shu (Anaheim, Calif.)
Coach/Player: Tony Gunawan (West Covina, Calif.)
Team Manager/Player: Howard Bach (San Francisco, Calif./Anaheim, Calif.)
For complete tournament results, please visit: http://www.tournamentsoftware.com/sport/tournament.aspx?id=3A818C74-EEB7-4994-B897-88C0929A51B8
The Thomas and Uber Cup are often referred to as the Men’s and Women’s World Team Championships respectively. In this event one team (country) competes against another team (country) in three singles matches and two doubles matches to determine the winning team. The Thomas Cup, first staged in 1948-1949, was the Badminton World Federation’s first major international tournament and originally took place every three years. In 1982 the tournament changed to a biennial event. The Thomas Cup was named for Sir George Thomas, the President of the World Body governing badminton who first conceived the idea of having a team championship event. Thomas, a legendary player having won 21 All England titles, and administrator of the sport donated the original trophy.
The Uber Cup started in 1956-1957 and, similar to the men’s competition, took place every three years. Since 1984 though, the event has been held in conjunction with the Thomas Cup every two years. The Uber Cup is named in honor of Betty Uber, a British badminton star who in 1950 started the campaign for a women’s team championship competition. Uber made the draw and competed in the inaugural Uber Cup in 1956-1957 at Lytham St. Annes in Lancashire, England. Like Thomas, Uber donated the original trophy for the event.
For more information, please contact Cecil Bleiker, NGB Media Services Director for USA Badminton at 719-330-2062. This press release is also available on the USOC’s media specific website at PRESSBOX.TEAMUSA.ORG.