Chinese badminton player dies after collapsing on court during tournament in Indonesia

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1st July 2024 – (Jakarta) 17-year-old Chinese player, Zhang Zhijie, passed away after collapsing on the court during an international tournament in Indonesia. Officials mourned the loss of the “outstanding” and “talented” athlete on Monday.

The incident occurred late Sunday during Zhang’s match against Japan’s Kazuma Kawano at the Asia Junior Championships in Yogyakarta. With the score tied at 11-11 in the first game, Zhang suddenly fell to the floor. Immediate medical attention was provided at the venue before he was rushed to the hospital by ambulance. Despite efforts to resuscitate him, Zhang could not be revived.

The cause of his death remains unknown at this time.

In a joint statement, Badminton Asia and the Badminton Association of Indonesia (PBSI) confirmed the unfortunate event, stating, “China’s Zhang Zhijie, a singles player, collapsed on the court during a match in the evening. He was sent to the hospital where he passed away at 23:20 local time yesterday. He was attended to by the tournament doctor and medical team. He was taken in the standby ambulance in less than two minutes and sent to the hospital. The world of badminton has lost a talented player.”

Zhang had been playing badminton since his kindergarten years and joined China’s national youth team in 2023. Earlier this year, he clinched the singles title at the prestigious Dutch Junior International, showcasing his remarkable skills.

The Chinese Badminton Association expressed deep sorrow over the loss, stating, “Zhang Zhijie loved badminton and was an outstanding athlete of the national youth badminton team. At present, the local hospital has not yet identified the cause of death.”

A moment of silence was observed during the team tournament in Yogyakarta, and the Chinese team wore black armbands as a mark of respect. The badminton community, including Indian Olympic medalist P.V. Sindhu, expressed their condolences and acknowledged the immense talent that Zhang possessed.