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  1. #1
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Default The Thoughts of John Moody

    The Northern Advocate

    Little racket in North about his star status

    21.05.2007

    By Tim Eves

    Think lucrative playing contracts, sell-out stadiums and hordes of fans clambering for tickets and - in these parts anyway - and the inevitable visions are of a big paddock with goalposts at either end.

    But then we don't live in Thailand or Malaysia. There rugby is a curiosity and badminton is the passion.

    Which is why John Moody bases himself in Malaysia these days.

    The Northlander is now New Zealand No.1, ranked 31st in the world, and is living the dream as a professional badminton player.

    He plays in front of packed stadiums every week, is clawing his way toward a spot in the Olympic team heading to Beijing and is gaining a reputation for sheer determination.

    But back here, Moody could walk down the street and barely raise an eyebrow.

    "I haven't actually been home (to Whangarei) for a while. It is a strange feeling when I come home these days, it is far removed from what I am used too now," Moody said.

    His relatively low profile on home soil belies his achievements as a badminton player in the last two years, though.

    Moody is now part of a privately owned and funded professional badminton club in Malaysia called KLRC, a team underwritten by a wealthy businessman called Andrew Cam.

    Having just finished his only big badminton assignment in New Zealand, the $US50,000 KLRC New Zealand Badminton Open, Moody is now heading across the Tasman to contest the Australian Open before flying to France for the Toulouse Open then onto the Scotland for the Surdiman Cup World Teams championships.

    Being the global badminton playboy is not his primary aim, though. For Moody it is all part of a plan to be at the Beijing Olympics next year.

    "I try to identify tournaments where I might go well. It is building up to be a busy year, I guess, with a lot of people all trying to do the same thing and qualify for the Olympics," he said.

    It would be nice, too, if Moody's achievements gained more significant coverage here in New Zealand. Not that he spends much time pondering the injustices of it. Playing in front of massive crowds overseas is a big enough distraction.

    "I played in India last week and Singapore the week before where we turned up to practice and there were 1000 people there watching," he said.

    "It reminded me of an All Blacks training.

    "On match day, you get stadiums packed out. The sheer size of the sport is just beyond the comprehension of people at home. Crowds of 15,000 and 17,000 are the usual."

    The only frustration for Moody was his unfortunate exit from the NZ Open in Auckland on Saturday.

    Moody was eliminated from the singles draw by world No.1 Choong Hann Wong from Malaysia, then was forced to withdraw from the doubles semifinals when he and playing partner Alan Chan collided during an earlier match.

    They were the only New Zealanders in the semis.

    "My parents have mixed feelings about my badminton because they don't see a lot of my tournaments," he said.

    "I have three or four tournaments at home and the rest are overseas."

    Moody was hoping he could put on a big performance on home turf. Instead his family will have to track his successes from afar, and maybe start planning travel schedules to Beijing next year.

  2. #2
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    Tought jobs for this guy from Moo Moo land

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Loh View Post
    Moody was eliminated from the singles draw by world No.1 Choong Hann Wong from Malaysia, then was forced to withdraw from the doubles semifinals when he and playing partner Alan Chan collided during an earlier match.

    wow, i didn't realise WCH has beaten LD already!

  4. #4
    Regular Member Loh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreamzz View Post
    wow, i didn't realise WCH has beaten LD already!
    I think the writer must have forgotten to insert the word "former" world no 1. WCH was once that if my memory serves me right. So was Roslin Hashim, briefly.
    Last edited by Loh; 05-22-2007 at 06:01 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Loh View Post
    I think the writer must have forgotten to insert the word "former" world no 1. WCH was once that if my memory serve me right. So was Roslin Hashim, briefly.

    yeah, all the top MAS MS players seem to have had a brief fling with the #1 spot at some point in their career.

  6. #6
    Regular Member phaarix's Avatar
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    Yeah this is so true. Everyone just wants to be tough and respected in NZ. And to be tough you have to play Rugby... Most people think badminton is "gay" or "slow" or whatever else. And they haven't ever seen it played. So they're judging it by what they've heard from everyone else. Badminton's reputation isn't very good here.

    But it's amazing what just a few hours of TV coverage can do. A lot of people changed their minds about it with that. But Motorsport and Rugby take precedence. I imagine the reason the NZ Open wasn't shown on free-to-air this year was because it clashed with Motorsport (I mean as if we haven't seen enough of that during the year already, Badminton is lucky if it gets a few hours a year).

    It's sick really that people aren't even willing to give sports like Badminton a chance. Most of the junior players have coaches for parents (or people already heavily involved in the Badminton scene) and if they didn't they probably wouldn't have gone near the sport. I was lucky to discover Badminton. If a couple of Americans (imagine that... Americans introducing me to Badminton , outdoors that is ) hadn't introduced me to the sport I never would have tried it.

    What we really need here is more exposure, more TV coverage. It has a big impact, but a few hours a year just doesn't cut it. I think up in the North Island they're doing a $3,000,000 upgrade to a Badminton centre. Hey it's probably for the World Juniors later this year, but personally I think that could have been $3 million better spent. Why spend it all on one hall when there are loads of rusting halls around New Zealand that could do wonders with a small fraction of that.

    Good on John Moody for basing himself in Malaysia, you just can't get anywhere in Badminton in New Zealand. I hope players like Alan Chan do the same. As a side note, Badminton is so unheard of here that in the only tiny minuscule article we got in our regional paper about the NZ Open, they misspelled his name Alex Chan (and made a few other horrible mistakes as well) >_>, *sigh*.
    Last edited by phaarix; 05-22-2007 at 08:18 AM.

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    Actually, we should count ourselves lucky in NZ. After playing in the UK, I think we're actually a bit spoiled for facilities here.

    In the UK, badminton is played mainly in multisport gyms, school halls, church halls. I even played a county match in Torquay in a town hall! There are not many purpose built badminton facilities at all. I only ever played in one in England - Milton Keynes, the national badminton centre. As far quality of the courts go, it was ok, but nothing special. Back in Wellington, NZ where I used to live, we had three dedicated badminton halls all within 25 km of each other. They're not as flash as Milton Keynes, but the flooring and lighting etc is just as good. Funnily enough, Jersey and Guernsey had really good badminton halls, though.

    Wayne Young

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    Quote Originally Posted by s1nn3r View Post
    Tought jobs for this guy from Moo Moo land
    nah it should be 'baa-baa' land...nz is known for its abundance of sheep not cows

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dimplex View Post
    nah it should be 'baa-baa' land...nz is known for its abundance of sheep not cows
    no. our cows produce some of the best dairy products in the world

  10. #10
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    haha wadever baa-baa or moo-moo land hahaha just hope MOOdy achieve better in the future and i think he is thinking to avenge his lose to WORLD NO.1 WONG CHOON HANN!!! wow....

  11. #11
    Regular Member phaarix's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kiwiplayer View Post
    Actually, we should count ourselves lucky in NZ. After playing in the UK, I think we're actually a bit spoiled for facilities here.

    In the UK, badminton is played mainly in multisport gyms, school halls, church halls. I even played a county match in Torquay in a town hall! There are not many purpose built badminton facilities at all. I only ever played in one in England - Milton Keynes, the national badminton centre. As far quality of the courts go, it was ok, but nothing special. Back in Wellington, NZ where I used to live, we had three dedicated badminton halls all within 25 km of each other. They're not as flash as Milton Keynes, but the flooring and lighting etc is just as good. Funnily enough, Jersey and Guernsey had really good badminton halls, though.

    Wayne Young
    Maybe it's different in the North Island (I'm just assuming that's where you are). The only badminton dedicated halls I've played in in the South Island are the halls in Christchurch and Dunedin. All the rest were for multiple sports (including the one here in Nelson, despite the fact it's called the Nelson Badminton Hall, it's still used for basketball, volleyball and whatever else). I am of course glad we've got something though .

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by tjl_vanguard View Post
    haha wadever baa-baa or moo-moo land hahaha just hope MOOdy achieve better in the future and i think he is thinking to avenge his lose to WORLD NO.1 WONG CHOON HANN!!! wow....
    i doubt he can win. moody's not even really no.1 in NZ. he still loses regularly to Geoff Bellingham, and he's only no. 1 cos Geoff retired, if i'm not mistaken.

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    yeah we can write the writer, to issue a correction statement.

    John Moody seems like a very talented player.
    Bright future ahead, lets wish him the best in his goal

  14. #14
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    All the best to John Moody. It is difficult to excel in a sport in which the country you represent is not interested, let alone the sport is commonly misunderstood by the public.

    I guess that is why John chose to live in Malaysia, where he can play competitively regularly. It is a long and lonely walk.

  15. #15
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    dude ... let me tell you all 1 thing why there's a big gap between NZ players and other asian country players..ok ? in m'sia and china, players ARE PAID to play.. same as in INdonesia... but here in nz .. most players PAY to play from their 1st step entering into badminton. They need to hire a private coach..whihc cost at least $20 to $30 nzd per hour (very young coaches..early 20's) then they need to enter interclub tournament ...which cost $40..and then they need to pay certain ammount of money to play for the region. They have to buy their own equiptments (of course not all of them, but most of them). Can see the differences ? and feather shuttle cocks here are so damn expensive which cost at least $30 eve though it's not those good shuttles like yonex.. victor .. barbolat..etc. I saw 1 weird brand which i cant remember wat it was .. costs $7nzd just for 1 shuttle..so guys...hehe.. im not talking bad things abt badminton in nz...most nz players are still studying in high schools..and they dont even hav the time to go for full time training session. They ern their points by joining the national tournaments and also some near by country's open championships

  16. #16
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    any pics of john moody plz??

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by aaron_11 View Post
    any pics of john moody plz??
    www.google.co.nz search for the image .. then u can see a guy holding a racquet

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