VANCOUVER- Two Thai badminton players are facing potential sanctions over a vicious on-court brawl after the sport’s world body opened disciplinary proceedings on Thursday.
Bodin Issara and Maneepong Jongjit could be hit with bans, suspensions or fines after last week’s fight, which unfolded during the Canada Open men’s doubles final in front of shocked spectators in Vancouver.
Video footage showed Bodin chasing Maneepong, his partner at last year’s Olympicsbut now teamed with Nipitphon Puangpuapech, on to a neighbouring court and dragging him to the ground.
He then punched his prone countryman twice and appeared to try to stamp on him before being dragged away from Maneepong, who got up shirtless and was helped away.
Fans were heard screaming and calling for the fight to end duringSunday’s ugly incident in Vancouver. Footage of the brawl has gone viral on the Internet.
The Badminton World Federation (BWF) said Bodin was facing five charges including physical abuse, while Maneepong would answer three including oral abuse and unsportsmanlike conduct.
The BWF will review evidence including statements from the two men before making a decision, a statement said.
Badminton is still reeling from a scandal at the Olympics when eight doubles players were banned for trying to lose group matches, in the hope of gaining a favourable quarterfinal draw.
Bodin and his partner, Pakkawat Vilailak, were disqualified from the Canada Open final after the fight.