Thursday, 13 Jun 2024

Badminton Pan America

Name: Lino Muñoz

City / Country: Mexico DF, Mexico

Birth Date: 08/02/1991

Specialty: Singles and doubles

Introduction

In this article, we will delve into the exciting world of badminton through the experiences of Lino Muñoz, a talented player from Mexico. Muñoz has achieved significant milestones in his career, including participation in the Olympic Games of Rio 2016. From his journey into the sport to his future goals, Muñoz shares his insights, anecdotes, and the impact badminton has had on his life.

At what age did you start in Badminton and how did you get into this sport?

“When I was 4, I started playing baseball until I turned 8. However, my parents encouraged me to try other sports, leading me to swimming, Judo, and Taekwondo. It was during this time that I discovered badminton and instantly fell in love with it. I bought my first racket the next day, and ever since, my passion for badminton has only grown.”

In how many tournaments did you participate and which was your best result?

“I have participated in numerous tournaments throughout my career, with last year alone including 26 tournaments to qualify for the Olympic Games. To be honest, I have lost count, but I estimate that I have taken part in more than 80 tournaments. Among my best achievements are reaching the semifinals in both singles and doubles at the Challenge of Brazil and Peru, as well as making it to the finals of the Puerto Rico Open, Suriname Open, and Chile Open. And, of course, fulfilling my dream of competing at the Olympics.”

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How does it feel to have represented your country in the Olympic Games of Rio 2016?

“Representing my country at the Rio 2016 Olympics was a dream come true. It remains the pinnacle of my life’s achievements. Since childhood, I have been captivated by the opening ceremony, the parade of delegations, and witnessing the thrilling competitions. It truly was the best thing in the world for me.”

To how many countries has badminton taken you?

“I have had the incredible opportunity to travel to various countries through badminton. While I cannot recall the exact number, I have been fortunate to visit every continent except Africa. Some countries I have had the pleasure of visiting multiple times due to competitions and training.”

What anecdotes come to your mind when you remember your trips?

“One unforgettable anecdote took place during my visit to New York for the US Open. Instead of staying at the designated host hotel, I found myself in a different location. Believing it wasn’t far, I decided to walk with a friend despite the scorching summer heat. As we continued walking and sweating profusely, panic set in as I needed to play in the afternoon. Desperate, I suggested flagging down a car for a ride. Miraculously, someone from the championship’s organization noticed us and kindly offered us a lift to the hotel.”

Which are your short and medium-term objectives as a badminton player?

“My immediate goal is to complete my university studies. Balancing training and studying has posed its challenges, as exams and tournaments often overlap. However, I aspire to train abroad to improve my skills and ultimately win a gold medal in the Pan American Games, while aiming for another shot at the Olympics.”

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What are you studying at the university?

“I am currently studying business administration, which I find to be a valuable asset alongside my badminton career.”

How challenging is it to train and study simultaneously?

“Undoubtedly, juggling studies and training is incredibly demanding. It requires careful time management and flexibility. There are instances where training needs to be paused for exams or work, and other moments when studying must take a backseat to travel and compete in championships.”

How do you maintain commitment and discipline in your life?

“Maintaining values such as respect, honesty, humility, and empathy has been vital in keeping my commitment and discipline intact. Learning that victories and losses are a part of the journey, and recognizing the value of learning from mistakes, has shaped my mindset.”

Besides sporting achievements, what else has badminton brought into your life?

“Beyond the thrill of travel and the medals I’ve won, badminton has provided me with countless opportunities to immerse myself in various cultures and learn from them. Most importantly, it has gifted me with lifelong friendships from all corners of the globe, individuals I know I can rely on in any circumstance.”

What are your favorite hobbies?

“Outside of badminton, I enjoy playing with my dog, spending time with friends, dancing, going to the cinema, and playing soccer.”

Who was your first coach?

“Virginia Garrido holds the distinction of being my first coach, and I am immensely grateful to her. Despite my initial focus on playing rather than training, she demonstrated immense patience and brought out the best in me.”

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Which club do you represent?

“I proudly represent the Sport Center CHAPULTEPEC.”

Is Badminton popular in your country?

“While badminton may not be as popular as other sports in Mexico, we are progressively gaining recognition through our achievements, contributing to the sport’s growth in the country.”

Have you ever played in the Junior Pan Am Championships?

“Yes, I have had the opportunity to participate in the Junior Pan Am Championships on several occasions. I am proud to have won the gold medal in mixed doubles and a bronze in singles.”