Denmark to welcome home its badminton world champs

After eight second-place finishes, the Danes finally smash home the gold

The Danish men’s badminton team will be celebrated at City Hall Square at 2:20 pm today following their historic triumph at the Thomas Cup last weekend.

The team made history over the weekend when they secured Denmark’s first ever title in the prestigious biennial tournament – also known as the World Men’s Team Championships.

“We won the Thomas Cup thanks to a minor miracle and a massive team effort,” said the Danish coach Lars Uhre. “With the injury problems we’ve had, we knew we could get a medal, but for it to turn out to be gold is unreal.”

“We fully backed each other. It didn’t matter which seven players we chose to go with – the others backed them up.”

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Second eight times
The Danes progressed through the group stage by shutting out South Africa (5-0) and New Zealand (5-0) before getting past Chinese Taipei (3-2).

They then out-duelled Japan 3-2 in the quarter-finals (tournament favourites China, which won five straight trophies 2004-12, bowed out at this stage), and Malaysia 3-2 in the semi-finals to set up a grand finale against 13-time winners Indonesia.

The Danes lost both the doubles, but Victor Axelsen and Jan Ø Jørgensen won both their singles to put the pressure on Hans-Kristian Vitinghus, who duly beat Ihsan Mustofa 21-15, 21-7 to seal the championship.

The Danes have finally achieved the pinnacle of the sport after finishing runners-up eight times since it started back in 1949.

In the women’s version, the Uber Cup, Denmark lost 0-3 to Japan in the quarter-final stage.

(photo: Badminton Denmark)
(photo: Badminton Denmark)