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Should match-throwing badminton players have been disqualified?

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Four teams in the women's badminton double tournament at the London Games have been disqualified after trying to lose their matches to secure a more favourable seed.

 Wang Xiaoli, right, and Yu Yang play a shot during their women's double badminton match against Kim Ha Na and Jung Kyung Eun of South Korea. (Adek Berry/AFP/GettyImages)The Badminton World Federation penalized two teams from South Korea and one each from China and Indonesia. The body accused the pairs of "not using one's best efforts to win a match" and "conducting oneself in a manner that is clearly abusive or detrimental to the sport."

Spectators watching the matches between these teams saw them serving into the net and deliberately hitting the shuttlecock wide of the court.  The crowd booed and jeered the players and began chanting "off, off, off!" Referees warned the players but play continued.

Beijing badminton silver medalist Gail Emms called the matches embarrassing and "absolutely shocking."

International Olympic Committee Vice President Craig Reedie, former head of the BWF, agreed with the disqualification. "You cannot allow a player to abuse the tournament like that, and not take firm action. So good on them," he said.

Chairman of the London Olympic organizers, Sebastian Coe called the matches "depressing."

However, the teams are blaming a new round-robin group stage introduced to the tournament for these Olympics. All the disqualified teams had already qualified for the knock-out round, so were trying to lose their games to secure an easier opponent and, in the case of the South Korean teams, to avoid playing each other before the final.

Do you agree that the players should have been disqualified? Or does the badminton federation hold some of the blame for introducing a format that, in some instances, makes losing the preferred result? Let us know what you think.

(This survey is not scientific. Results are based on readers' responses.)

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