Badminton has been a medal sport at the Olympic Games since Barcelona 1992. At the London 2012 Olympic Games, 172 players from 51 countries competed for the five gold medals. In Rio in 2016, 172 players will also qualify for the Games.
Badminton and the Olympic Games
After being a demonstration sport at the Munich 1972 Olympic Games, badminton was accepted as an Olympic sport at the IOC Session in East Berlin on 5th June 1985. Badminton was a demonstration sport at the Seoul 1988 Olympic Games where thirty players from nine countries competed in the five events.
Badminton made its debut as an official sport at the Barcelona 1992 Olympic Games where four medal events were hosted – men’s and women’s singles, men’s and women’s doubles. At the Atlanta 1996, mixed doubles was included as a medal event. Barcelona 1992 made history for badminton.
It was the first time the sport was a medal event and for Indonesia, these first Games for badminton provided two Olympic Champions when Susi Susanti from Indonesia won the first gold medal for badminton and two hours later, her fiancée Alan Budi Kusuma won the second Olympic gold medal for Indonesia in the men’s singles.
Indonesia had waited 40 years for their first Olympic Champion and went away from the Games with two – both from badminton. Indonesia won two golds, two silver and one bronze medal at the Barcelona Olympic Games.