Badminton body hits back at sexism claims

12:30, May 04 2011

Badminton's governing body has responded to criticism it is being sexist by ordering women players to wear skirts.

The Badminton World Federation says it's "never been the intention ... to portray women as sexual objects."

Some players have opposed the new rule, which will apply at the world championships in London from Aug. 8-14, and the Olympics next year.

The federation says women can "continue to wear shorts if they wish but simply wear a skirt over the top of the shorts."

The BWF says "aesthetic and stylish presentation" of players is important to increase badminton's popularity.

The rule takes effect at international events from June 1 following the federation's annual meeting in Qingdao, China.

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AP