Playing a team tournament has been on the drawing board since badminton was spread out to more and more cities and players during the 1930s and 40s. The seminal work was done from 1945 and in 1949 the first team tournament were played. The best league consisted of four teams – four from Copenhagen where all the best players were located and four provincial teams.
Due to the fact that all the best players in Denmark at that time were to find in Copenhagen Clubs, they won all the National Team Championships in the first 30 years. Amateur players were the only ones allowed playing in the team tournament so you could see much weakened teams from season to season depending on how many turning professionals. This changed in 1988 so the best players in the country have been participating in the team tournament ever since.
The first provincial city to win the National Championship was Triton Aalborg. This history making event took place in 1981 and continued the following year where Aarhus won the Championship. More provincial cities have won the National Team Championships but the Copenhagen teams have dominated the best league of the team tournament for throughout times.
Traditionally, the final has been played in K.B. Hallen and it still is. There’s always full house and a great atmosphere created by the fans of the two teams. They bring banners, drums, clapping hands etc. – all these things to help their favourite team to win the Championship.
The highest level possible to play in the team tournament in Denmark is “Badmintonligaen”. It has existed for five years under that name and it has developed explosively every year.
Normally, a team match consists of 13 individual matches but in Badmintonligaen you only play six. Each player can only participate in one event and if the match ends 3-3 you have to play a “Golden Set” to decide who the winner is.
Besides playing only 6 matches, the set up has to be done in a certain way which considers spectators, TV and a uniform set up to all the matches in the league. So whether you are in Greve or Aarhus to watch a game, it almost looks the same.
For some years, TV has transmitted live from Badmintonligaen. It’s the Danish television station TV2 Sport who has the rights for the league and they send live transmissions from one match each round, the quarter and semi finals and the final.
At the same time the league has developed into being very attractive to play in. Both Danish and international top players and talents are to find in every club so the level of badminton played in Badmintonligaen is very high and worth watching.
All this has contributed to the exciting development of Badmintonligaen which appeals to the spectators, sponsors, TV and players. It has given the game a new perspective and it’s a big experience to watch some of the best players in the world compete against each other on Danish soil.