Happy 30th Anniversary, Serbia!
Date: 1/5/2024 2:14 PM
Published by : Badminton Association of Serbia
The Badminton Association of Serbia celebrates a significant milestone, highlighting not only sporting achievements but also the love for the game that has shaped generations.

The Badminton Association of Serbia (BAS) celebrates three decades of dedicated involvement in this exceptional Olympic sport. Enthusiastic efforts and dedicated work by BAS members have elevated it to a nationally esteemed sports institution.

The turning point for Serbian badminton came during the Barcelona Olympic Games. Enthusiastic technical university students initiated organized badminton, establishing clubs in Belgrade, Šabac, and beyond. This zeal led to the founding of the Badminton Association of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia on September 19th  1993, with the Badminton Association of Serbia continuing the legacy in 1998.

Over three decades, badminton has risen from a "little-known" sport to being positioned in the second category of national sports. Professionalism, education, teamwork, and immense passion have led badminton to exceptional results, both competitively and organizationally.

"Continuity is the key characteristic of badminton in Serbia," emphasized Radomir Jovović, President of the Executive Board of the Badminton Association of Serbia. As a player, former national champion, and later as a coach, Jovović emphasizes the values that badminton offers youth: physical and mental development, hard work with tangible results, and an essential sense of happiness.

Good organization, serious administration, and the “learning organization” model are qualities that BAS has nurtured for decades. "Our team today includes individuals like the Association's founder, Predrag Vuković, a former secretary-general and current Board member, as well as younger professionals who've become pillars of the Association through a unique development system" said Jovović.

In the jubilee year of 2023, badminton has achieved significant sports success. The best mixed double pair, Mihajlo Tomić and Anđela Vitman, secured numerous medals at elite tournaments, propelling them into the top 60 on the BWF ranking. Their outstanding performance reached its peak with a remarkable placement among the top 8 pairs in Europe at the European Games in Poland. As the youngest elite pair on the BWF list, Tomić and Vitman are also recognized as Olympic candidates. Thanks to their brilliant play and the continuous efforts of the BAS, the Serbian flag waved for the first time in the history of this sport at this year's World Championships.

These remarkable results are not isolated; multiple junior and U17 team and individual medals at European championships, numerous medals at international junior and elite competitions, high positions of Serbian players on BEC and BWF rankings, a silver medal at the European Para-Badminton Championship, participation in developmental Olympic and international “high-class” programs are just part of the impressive list of achievements. Organizing international tournaments, such as the “Serbian U17 & Youth International Novi Sad” and hosting the “European Junior Championships Belgrade 2022” position BAS among serious organizations on the European scene.

“Badminton in Serbia is building solid foundations for future generations of athletes. Projects like the National Badminton Center, built in 2017, play a crucial role in supporting young talents and represent the heart of sports development in Serbia. The center provides infrastructure for daily training for professionals and recreational players, education, athlete preparation and competitions" stated Jovović, adding that the center, one of BAS's dreams turned into reality, has elevated the scope and quality of training activities to a professional level.

National support, primarily from the Ministry of Sports, has played a crucial role in badminton's development. Funding for programs, events, and scholarships underscores the Ministry's commitment.The best elite athletes are part of the Olympic program “Paris 2024”, while the most successful juniors participate in the Development Program of the Olympic Committee of Serbia. Badminton Association of Serbia's full membership in the Badminton World Federation and the Badminton Europe Confederation fosters high-quality international cooperation.

The implementation of the ‘’Shuttle Time’’ is one of the main activities of the Association in developing school badminton. More than 300 teachers and students have undergone training and badminton is now present in more than 40 cities across Serbia. This project is a crucial step toward more massive implementation and, in the coming period, BAS will undertake a series of activities for further development of badminton in the country.

The long sports journey, an adventure full of love and fanaticism that began with humble pioneering steps, and today a system that brings success and joy, continues, as stated by Jovović, with even greater zeal in the next decade.

“Speaking of the relatively near future, the main competitive goal of the Association is to win medals at the European Elite and Para-Badminton Championships, placement among the top 50 players on the BWF rankings, qualification for the Olympic and Paralympic Games, as well as continuity in achieving exceptional results in younger age categories. At the same time, we will strive to maintain and improve a very extensive and demanding badminton system," said Jovović, emphasizing that working to increase the budget for program implementation, improving professional staff, and strengthening the operational team are also priorities of the Association.

The future for BAS includes encouraging children to engage in school badminton, supporting clubs, establishing new centers, developing para-badminton, intensifying international cooperation, and organizing more international events.

On the occasion of the great jubilee, the Badminton Association of Serbia simply and briefly states: "Love, play, live badminton, and help us make the good reputation of this excellent Olympic sport heard even louder and farther."

At Badminton Europe, we celebrate the Badminton Federation of Serbia’s history and achievements and wish them the best in their future endeavours!  

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