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Hans-Kristian Vittinghus: these are my thoughts about the 5x11 scoring system

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Thank you so much for all the nice messages! A lot of you have asked what I think of the 5x11 scoring system and since testing it was the main reason for my participation in Belgium last week, I think it's only fair to give you guys my thoughts.

In general I really enjoyed the challenge of adapting to this system. It is indeed very different and generates a whole different kind of pressure on the players. There is almost no room for easy mistakes and there's not much time to "get into" the match. It's straight on intense and you will pay the price if you don't have a plan from the start. At least that's my experience.

What often sets players apart is the ability to handle pressure and make the right choices when it gets close. So on the contrary to what I hear a lot of people and players say, I don't necessarily see this 5x11 system as an advantage for the underdog. There will be many more crucial moments in a match and for the less experienced/favoured player to handle it better than the opponent in 3 out of 5 games (which is needed to win) is not going to be easy.

The more I think about it I actually think this scoring system could help raise the level of play. At least in singles that is. I'm a little concerned about the importance of the whole service/return situation in doubles. It seems to be even more important with 5x11 scoring and to me that's not what we should strive for. Doubles is impressive at it's best, but matches with mostly 3-4-5 shot rallies are not very interesting to look at even for a badminton nerd like me.

My biggest concern however, is the fact there is no setting at 10-10. I don't see what good it brings. It makes matches more unpredictable yes - but at a very high cost. At 10-all we are at the peak of the excitement, so to me it makes no sense we want to finish it after just one point. Setting to just 12 or 13 would make a big difference in my opinion and could still create lots of situations where we play one final deciding point.

These are my initial thoughts. I'm happy to discuss them, this also goes for other players, so I can bring forward your opinions to the rest of the BWF Athlete's Commission.

If you still haven't seen a match being played with the 5x11 scoring, here's a link to my final in Belgium against Marc Zwiebler. It should give a good impression of the systems pro and cons.

door

via Hans-Kristian Vittinghus

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