Badminton season preview: swinging to success


Farah Caban

Co-Captain Erika Jiang plays a practice match with Victor Hui on Friday Feb. 25 during morning practice.

Farah Caban, Business Manager

In the weeks leading up to Burlingame badminton’s first match, the team practiced before school from 6:15 to 7:45 a.m. Unbeknownst to most, early season badminton practices are intense and involve cardio drills to get players conditioned for the season.

“We usually do a lot of exercise right now because we are trying to prepare to play,” head coach Salvador Banquiles said. “We are trying to build up stamina for [the players] and [teach] how to move inside the court.”

Banquiles’ coaching method paid dividends in the past. Before the start of the pandemic, the team was third in the Bay Division, the top division in the Peninsula Athletic League.  

“I think expectations for the team are pretty basic for what Burlingame High School usually expects from every athlete,” junior and co-captain Erika Jiang said. “[Coach Banquiles expects] regular attendance and commitment to the sport and just trying your best to be honest — and of course having fun.”

Even though the physical demands of the sport may be high, the captains and coaches have a baseline expectation for the team that focuses on improvement.

“You just give your best to play. It doesn’t matter to me if you lose or you win, but that the game itself is really good,” Banquiles said. 

As of March 8, Burlingame has played three matches: one against Mills High School, which Burlingame lost 3-27, one against San Mateo High School, where Burlingame lost 11-19 and another against Capuchino, where Burlingame tied 15-15, but won the tie breaker 2-3.