Chinese Taipei badminton fans went furious yesterday after seeing Tai Tzu Ying’s modest hotel accommodation in Tokyo.  

The world No. 1 shared a photo (featured thumbnail photo) of her cubicle room which looked like an average 3-star hotel. It was later learnt that Tai was indeed staying at a 3-star hotel, the Marroad Inn Tokyo.

This angered the already annoyed fans. Two days back, there was huge disappointment with the sports department of the Chinese Taipei government after the country’s Olympic athletes were made to fly to Tokyo in economy class on a chartered flight.

Tai, who is used to flying business class, commented, “I miss EVA Air, you can enjoy business class.”

Left: Tai Tzu Ying flying to Tokyo Olympics in economy class, Right: Tai Tzu Ying flying in business class for a tournament in 2019

Chinese Taipei President Tsai Ing-wen came forward yesterday to publicly apologize for the blunder and said, “Such an inconsiderate arrangement showed a lack of thoughtfulness to athletes representing our country, which is deeply regrettable.”

President Tsai also said that the Sports Administration made the arrangement to prevent athletes from contracting COVID-19.

An angry citizen commented, “Is Taiwan really going bankrupt?”

Others were quick to make comparisons with the accommodations where athletes of other countries were staying. 

Left: Room view from Indonesian women’s doubles player Greysia Polii, Right: Rio Olympic silver medallist Chan Peng Soon

Today, Tai Tzu Ying posted a message on her Instagram to calm her fans down. She wrote, “Good morning, thank you for your concern. It is a good thing to be able to live close to the venue, save time on the ride and get more time to rest. 

“The (Olympic) athlete’s village is 50 minutes away from the stadium (Musashino Forest Sports Plaza, badminton venue at the Tokyo Olympics), but the place where we live now is only 10 minutes away from the stadium.

“Whether it is before or after the match, we can have more time to rest to prepare for the match.”