General

Celebrating and driving badminton forward in Baku
Date: 4/18/2023 5:40 PM
Published by : Sara Gonzalez Martinez (BEC)
Badminton Europe and all Members will meet in Baku, Azerbaijan, for a weekend of networking, collaborating, and decision-making, as well as celebrating and recognising achievements.

This is an important time of the year for European badminton as Members will gather to connect, learn, share, and discuss in the 2023 BEC Congress, to be hosted in Baku, Azerbaijan, on the 22 and 23 April.

The theme for this edition of the annual event is inclusive badminton. Badminton Azerbaijan have presented a moto for the congress, “Let’s make badminton accessible for all”, reflecting the federation’s efforts to make the sport accessible for all disabled people.

Busy, enlightening days ahead
The official arrival day is fast approaching; Baku will be welcoming all participants on Thursday already. The informal gathering will set the stage for some intense days and will be an opportunity for everyone to greet each other. “It’s a chance for people to both socialise and network,” said Badminton Europe’s General Secretary Brian Agerbak.

Friday is the official opening day of the 2023 BEC Congress, and the Members’ Forum will be the day’s main highlight: “It is an opportunity for us to bring some information to our Members and to get feedback from them on what they expect to receive from us in the upcoming period,” explained Agerbak.

Major decisions to be taken
The closing day will be a day of paramount importance. Both the 2023 Annual Delegates’ Meeting and the 2023 BEC Awards Gala will be taking place on Saturday. Among many other weighty matters, Members will decide who will be the new President of Badminton Europe — the two candidates are João Matos from Portugal and Sven Serré from Belgium.

There will also be elections for two positions in the BEC Board with five candidates running, as well as an election for BWF Vice President, with three candidates in the race. “There are a lot of possibilities for Members to involve themselves in this democratic process for the leadership of the upcoming period in Badminton Europe,” stated Agerbak.

Among all the important decisions, this will also be the perfect chance to establish in-depth conversations. “There will be plenty of discussions this weekend on the status of badminton in Europe and what to do in the next period to improve in all parameters.”

A time to celebrate outstanding achievements
One of the highlights of the 2023 BEC Congress will obviously be the 2023 BEC Awards Gala, where those in attendance but also the fans following the gala from home through our platforms will get to see who will be awarded. 

“I don’t want to give anything away yet but there have been some amazing achievements and that’s pretty exciting,” said Agerbak in anticipation of the gala. “Nothing is given, so we’ll see who will win the awards on Saturday.”

Wonderful hosts
Baku, the capital and largest city of Azerbaijan, is a place that has attracted many for its rich history, beauty, and previous major sports events, as remarked by Agerbak. “Baku is a beautiful capital. I was lucky to be there for the first European Games in 2015. It’s a wonderful place.”

Azerbaijan is an experienced hosts and they have left nothing to chance. “The organisation is probably one of the most well-prepared we’ve ever had. Immediately after being awarded the hosting, they started the preparations and we’ve had a lot of communication along the way. We’ve also been there to go through all the facilities and the programme that’s coming up.”

“I’m expecting something really grand and well-prepared. I know they are fantastic hosts, and they are very much looking forward to welcoming the whole European badminton family this week,” concluded Agerbak.

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