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WHO team wins silver !

34th United Nations Inter-Agency Games (IAG)


During the game

The World Health Organization's badminton team earned its first ever trophy, for second place, at the United Nations Inter-Agency Games (IAG) held from 18-22 May in the beautiful coastal town of Pesaro, Italy on the Adriatic. After serious and frequent pre-tournament training and two days of intense, sometimes worryingly close matches which resulted in both victories and losses, WHO team was declared as having the second highest number of points (3) of all five teams participating. This constituted awesome progress for the recently established WHO team at only its second ever participation at the IAG.

The other teams were UNOV/UNODC/CTBTO/IAEA (1st, 4 points), ITU/ILO/UNSSC/UNOG/ WHO (3rd, 2 points), FAO/IFAD (4th, 1 point) and UNESCO (5th, 0 points). The tournament consisted exclusively of doubles matches: ladies, men's and mixed. 

The eight-member, multinational WHO team was comprised of Shook-Pui LEE-MARTIN (Captain, Malaysia), Gillian DAWSON (United Kingdom), Melinda HENRY (United States), Chapal KHASNABIS (India), Philipp Mayrhofer-Grunbuhel (Austria), Alexei MIKHAILOV (Russia), Goro YAMADA (Japan) and Hajo ZEEB (Germany).

Two other WHO team members, Colin LAING (United Kingdom) and Grace ROB (Kenya) played for a rival team which earned third place. 


WHO team also demonstrated award-winning spirit. Cheering from the bench was continuous and high-decibel, games carefully analysed, strategic coaching advice given, massages and sports medicine promptly provided to sore muscles and injuries and energy drinks shared. 

Following the unprecedented victory, super fit WHO team players (with true potential also for singles) danced for three hours straight with the other Games' athletes at a open-air disco under the stars, swam in the cool pool and calm sea, explored the cultural treasures of nearby towns, replaced lost calories with fine Italian specialties and "rehydrated" on the beach at sundown.

M. Henry


 BC O.M.S. 2005-2011