USA Badminton Teams Win Pan American Preliminary to Advance to the 2012 Thomas and Uber Cup Finals, May 20-27 in China

Feb. 20, 2012, 1:49 p.m. (ET)

For Immediate Release

February 20, 2012


USA Badminton Teams Win Pan American Preliminary to Advance to the 2012 Thomas and Uber Cup Finals, May 20-27 in China


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – The USA Badminton Men’s and Women’s Teams performed very well this weekend, both winning the Pan American Preliminary tournament for the 2012 Thomas and Uber Cup Final, held at the Los Angeles Badminton Club in El Monte, Calif., February 17-19.  By virtue of winning this event both the USA Badminton Thomas Cup Team (Men) and the USA Badminton Uber Cup Team (Women) advance to the 2012 Thomas and Uber Cup Finals which will be held May 20-27 in Wuhan, Hubei, China.


The USA Badminton women’s team faced four other teams in the Uber Cup preliminary.  The Uber Cup Preliminary was a round robin event that resulted in the USA victorious and undefeated over Canada, Brazil, Barbados and Puerto Rico.


Final Results for the 2012 Uber Cup Preliminary:

USA (4-0)

Canada (3-1)

Brazil (2-2)

Barbados (1-3)

Puerto Rico (0-4)


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 men’s teams were victorious over a total of seven other teams in the Thomas Cup Preliminary.  The Thomas Cup Preliminary was contested as Pool Play with two teams advancing to a final round from both Pool A and Pool B.  Despite finishing second to Guatemala in Pool B, the USA Badminton Team went on to win the event by defeating both Canada (3-0) and Guatemala (3-1) in the finals of the event.


Final Results for the 2012 Thomas Cup Preliminary:

USA (4-1) – Winner of Final Round

Guatemala (4-1) – Winner of Group B

Canada (4-1) – Winner of Group A

Brazil (2-3) – Second in Group A

Jamaica (1-2) - Third in Group B

Suriname (1-2) – Third in Group A

Puerto Rico (0-3) – Fourth in Group B

Barbados (0-3) – Fourth in Group A


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:


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.