by Mike Grossman (from a report filed by YANG YANG Badminton Equipment)

December 17, 1996 (New Shuttlenws) - Sources close to the International Badminton Federation disclosed today that the Chinese badminton association has been assessed a US10,000 dollar fine for cancelling an invitational tournament called the China Masters. The same sources said that the Chinese association was very dismayed at the penalty.

The tournament was slated to be held this week in the city of Guangzhou and was supposed to feature some of the world's top players including Poul-Erik Hoyer-Larsen of Denmark, Mia Audina of Indonesia as well as a bevy of top Chinese players.

The China Masters was being organized by a sports promotion company based in Hong Kong and was to have a purse of US100,000 dollars. The promoters were said to have had trouble lining up sponsors for the event.

The penalty was reportedly imposed because the cancellation was made quite late and also because the cancellation put the badminton federation in a bad light. As well, top players and officials, some of whom had already made the trip to Asia or were in transit, were severely inconvenienced.

The same sources also said that the China Masters cancellation was in the back of the minds of the IBF decisionmakers when the 1998 Thomas and Uber Cups finals were moved to Hong Kong from Shanghai, reportedly due to the desires of the prospective sponsors.

The sports promotion company that is involved in the China Masters fiasco is the same organization that is now embroiled in a dispute with the National Basketball Association over the use of the initials "NBA" in a Chinese professional basketball league called "CNBA" or the Chinese National Basketball Association. These promoters are also facing legal action over non-payment of salaries from some of the American players that they had brought over to play in the Chinese league.