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2012 All England Premier Super Series - Memories

Discussion in 'German Open / All England / Swiss Open 2012' started by abedeng, Mar 10, 2012.

  1. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Last year, I was totally in disrespect to the Premier League status of the All England Championships. My journey to the All England Championships was way out of Premier League class. While staying at micro-sized hotel rooms too ...... Instead, it was more of a journey of re-discovery, of the Theatre of Dreams at Old Trafford and the Canals of Birmingham, and fighting the Bull of the BullRing, of course.

    But now, the cheapskate hotel where I used to stay is put under administration. And anything under administration, I avoid like a plague.

    Therefore, this year’s event is strictly in observance of, err, proper etiquette when attending to the most prestigious Premier Super Series Event which also happens to be the last Premier Super Series event to allow for Olympic qualification. And so, off comes the Emirates Skywards points – to trade for Business Class upgrades of cheapskate Economy fare. And out comes my Hyatt Gold Passport card, to secure a place at the imposing Hyatt Regency Birmingham. Just a stone’s throw from the NIA.

    Since I was flying in to London this time, getting to Birmingham required no less than a First Class Rail ticket from London Euston to Birmingham New Street. It helps when the First Class ticket price was among the lowest I’ve ever seen ever in the great history of National Rail. Yup, even lower than the Anytime Off-Peak ticket, and comes with a proper meal.

    But first, a quick stop to the Olympic Park and the EDF London Eye.
     
  2. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    The Olympic Park

    Upon my arrival at Heathrow Termnal 3 of Thursday noon, I went through the midday traffic on the Tube for a good 70 minutes to Stratford. It was already past 2 pm when I reached the still-to-complete-but-already-GBP 2 million-overbudgeted Olympic Park.The Olympic Park is just beside the Stratford main shopping throughfare, which is Zone 3 territory for those of you unfamiliar with Transport for London Zones. The Olympic Facilities are still being built and spruced up. Pics here: Olympic Westfield.jpg
    Shopping Paradise Opposite London 2012 Olympic Park
    Olympic Mini.jpg
    Comes complete with a hanging Mini Cooper
    Olympic Ad.jpg
    Team GB Cycling Team doing their promo shoot
    Olympic 5.jpg Olympic 4.jpg Olympic 2.jpg Olympic 1.jpg
    Views of the stadiums within
    Olympic 3.jpg
    And this must be where the Olympic Flame shall burn during the Games

    It was reported that the budget had run over substantially by 2 million GBP due to unexpected increase of, ahem, security personnel from 10,000 to 23,000. Apparently, they want to have everything checked, including all garbage bins etc.To, ahem, ensure that London does not go to the same financial quagmire as Athens, I immediately took action to visit the biggest London 2012 Shop nearby and buy myself some badminton-related souvenirs. So now, the London 2012 budget deficit has gone down to about 1.999991 million GBP.

    Pics Here:
    Souvenir 2.jpg Souvenir 1.jpg

    The only two souvenirs depicting the sport we love, a keychain and a 50 pence coin with badminton shuttle engraved
     
    #2 abedeng, Mar 10, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2012
  3. Louisa

    Louisa Regular Member

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    thanks for the sharing, abg din....:D
     
  4. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    This was meant to motivate you and limsy to start travelling ...... wakakakaka.
     
  5. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    It was getting dusk, and rush hour beckons. Time to make a move to the EDF London Eye. Another company that is in the local news for, err, misrepresentation of contract to potential customers. Unfortunately, it had nothing to do with the prices of the EDF London Eye tickets .......

    Another stab on the overstressed Transport for London Tube Network, and I arrived there just as dusk turns to night.

    Pics here:

    LondonEye1.jpg LondonEye2.jpg
    The London Eye from across Waterloo Station

    LondonEye3.jpg LondonEye4.jpg
    Views of the London Eye Capsules

    View7.jpg View6.jpg View5.jpg View4.jpg View3.jpg View1.jpg View8.jpg
    Breathtaking views from the capsule
     
  6. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Spending the Night with A Lady ......

    Yup, time is getting on, and I have to keep an appointment to spend the night with a Lady. Not just any lady, 'cos she's still a virgin. As in the Virgin Train to Birmingham New Street ......... wakakakaka.

    After a quicky dinner at Waterloo, it was time to move across the river towards Euston Railway Station.

    The UK's Rail Service is undergoing an upheaval, and plans are put forward by the UK Transport Secretary (aka Minister of Transport) improve efficiency and raise prices by, err, specifying peak fare times in the evening to start at 3 pm instead of 5 pm, and shutting down ticket offices. Needless to say, people are already clamouring to shoot the idea down, and workers have threatened to strike. Such democracy ......

    Since I was ahead of schedule, I got to spend some time in the Virgin Trains First Class Lounge - nothing much really, compared to the, ahem, Emirates Lounges.

    Pics here:

    Virgin1.jpg
    Virgin Trains First Class Lounge

    Virgin2.jpg Virgin3.jpg
    Virgin Trains First Class Coach K - practically empty and I shared the whole coach with only one other passenger
     
  7. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    My base of operations this time is the closest ever hotel to the NIA, aka the Hyatt Regency Birmingham. Not quite as imposing as the Hyatts over South East Asia, nonetheless it is well equipped and cosy.

    Here are some pics of the place:

    Hyatt.jpg
    The Hyatt at Night - in the foreground are statues of 3 Birmingham Bred VIPs

    Hyatt2.jpg
    Just to confirm that I'm in the right place ......

    Hyatt3.jpg
    The Hyatt during the day

    HyattRoom1.jpg HyattRoom2.jpg
    Pictures of my room

    HyattWater.jpg
    The Hyatt is so caring about our hydration ...... with a huge price tag attached
     
  8. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Passed by some interesting sights on the way to the hotel .....

    Pics here:

    Birmingham3.jpg
    The Birmingham Big 3 - I only know of James Watts

    BirminghamBas.jpg
    The Baskerville House in the background - but hey look, there's an All England banner here!

    BirminghamWar.jpg
    The War Memorial - yup, Britain has lots of these practically everywhere

    BirminghamICC.jpg
    The Birmingham ICC and Symphony Hall just opposite the Hyatt
     
  9. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Going Great Lengths ...........

    Principal unlicensed photography inside the NIA has been made excruciatingly difficult by the alert presence of enforcement personnel with X-ray vision. We had to go through great lengths to, err, run covert surveillance and photo reconnaissance operations.Thus the theme of the next row of pictures, "Great Lengths".

    Pics Here: NIA MAS5.jpg NIA MAS1.jpg NIA MAS2.jpg Malaysian Supporters - going great lengths to greet their hero ......... NIA MAS3.jpg NIA MAS4.jpg .... and in celebration of his victory NIA Photo.jpg NIA licensed photographers - going thru great lengths just to get the right angled shots NIA ZN.jpg Coach Zhang Ning - going thru great lengths to keep her strategies secret so as to whisper to Li Xuerui's ears only NIA Danes.jpg Danish supporters - the only other strategic supporting squad other than Malaysians. Going great lengths to celebrate a win, and they shall be represented again in the final NIA KKK1.jpg NIA KKK2.jpg And finally, Koo Kien Kiat - going great lengths as to make himself inconspicuous. With cap and all, I could spot him from a mile away.
     
    #9 abedeng, Mar 10, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 10, 2012
  10. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Ok guys, the rest of the pics shall have to wait until I get back home. My expensive 24 hour Hyatt Internet Access is about to expire ..... and I need to pack for checkout soon.
     
  11. pjswift

    pjswift Regular Member

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    Wow, abedeng, you make Birmingham look exciting. Makes it very tempting to join you next year. And you gotta new camera?
     
  12. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Camera is not very new - this Canon was purchased after my old Nikon got squashed like a bug coming back from Indonesia Premier Super Series last year. But it packs a 14X zoom ...... the most compact big zoom point and shoots available. Pic quality not too bad.

    Printing out my boarding passes now at the Hyatt Business Centre ......
     
  13. markchan

    markchan Regular Member

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    Thanks abedeng for some great pics of the London Stadium, etc. Keep it coming !!
     
  14. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Hallo, it's not in London, it's in Birmingham. As in almost 200 kms northwest of London.

    London is where Wembley Arena is, venue of the last World Championships and next Olympics.

    My flight is delayed - terrible, hope there is enough time to catch the Singapore connection tomorrow.
     
  15. markchan

    markchan Regular Member

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    I meant the Olympic park and its stadium and surroundings.....
    waiting for more pics and reports..
     
  16. jamesd20

    jamesd20 Moderator

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    Lol...I stopped in same hotel as you!

    Why they don't have free Wifi for the price I don't know.

    It is the most convenient for the NIA though.
     
  17. ants

    ants Regular Member

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    2 quid over a bottle of water is not that expensive. You don't need to convert everything into RM when you are in a foreign country. If you need to drink you need to drink. Anyway the pipe water is free and it is
    safe to drink compare to Malaysian water.
     
  18. Voltric

    Voltric Regular Member

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    Any Holiday Inn would have given you bottled water FOC.
     
  19. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Oh yes it is, have you tried Tesco, WHSmith, Sainsbury prices?
     
  20. abedeng

    abedeng Regular Member

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    Some Pics for Quarterfinals Action

    OK, now to the first pics of the action, from quarterfinals day ......As I said, not that many pics this year - there were more camera confiscations by the eagle eyed monitoring personnel than at anytime I remember. Luckily they were more sporting during the finals prize presentations ...... Q-final Sung1.jpg Q-final Sung2.jpg Q-final Sung3.jpg Q-final Sung4.jpg
    Sung Ji-Hyun in battle with Tai Tzu Ying.
    Q-final Tago1.jpg Q-final Tago2.jpg Q-final Tago3.jpg
    Tago, reducing more of Coach Keita Masuda's hair in his fight against Chen Long

    Q-final LD1.jpg Q-final LD2.jpg Q-final LD3.jpg
    Lin Dan in action against Taufik Hidayat

    Q-final Rumbaka1.jpg Q-final Rumbaka2.jpg
    Hayom Rumbaka, testing the, err, painful arm and shoulder of the defending champion

    Q-final PoonTse.jpg
    Poon and Tse - not a bad pair from HK, but started off badly in their tie.
     
    #20 abedeng, Mar 12, 2012
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2012

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