Japan’s First Olympic Badminton Gold Winner Akaya Takahashi Retires | Badminton News


Akaya Takahashi gained Japan’s first ever badminton Olympic gold along with her doubles accomplice in Rio 2016.© AFP

Ayaka Takahashi, who gained Japan’s first ever badminton Olympic gold along with her doubles accomplice in Rio 2016, has retired conceding she now not has the “inside hearth” to compete. Takahashi and Misaki Matsutomo scored a spectacular come-from-behind win on the 2016 Olympics, scoring 5 straight factors when down 19-16 within the ultimate recreation to defeat Denmark’s Christinna Pedersen and Kamilla Rytter Juhl. However she has opted to skip the prospect to defend her Olympic title on dwelling soil, citing partly the choice to postpone the Tokyo 2020 Video games by a 12 months due to the coronavirus.

“After profitable the gold medal in Rio, I might been struggling to take care of morale,” she confessed at a web based press convention this week.

Regardless of coaching onerous with Matsutomo, she stated she had struggled with “data that weren’t satisfying sufficient in 2019, the suspension of tournaments, and the postponement of the Tokyo Olympics”.

“I doubt if my inside hearth and physique will final for one more 12 months,” she stated.

Takahashi stated Matsutomo and her sponsors “revered” her resolution, and that she now hoped to work to advertise badminton.

Takahashi and Matsutomo, nicknamed “Takamatsu,” have been the primary non-Chinese language pair to win gold since badminton was launched to the Olympics in 1992.

Matsutomo instructed reporters she was “deeply grateful for the partnership”, including she could not think about “having gotten this far” with out Takahashi.


The coronavirus pandemic has badly hit the 2020 badminton world tour, forcing the cancellation of the distinguished Japan and China Opens subsequent month.

The Tokyo 2020 Video games at the moment are scheduled to open on July 23, 2021, although there are questions on whether or not the worldwide occasion can go forward if the pandemic has not receded by then.

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