49-Year-Old Ashaway Player Reaches Badminton World Chps.

December 6, 2017

Ashaway, RI – An improbable story, a quest, a dream come true: however you want to style it, Yuko Kawasaki’s journey to this year’s World Badminton Championships in Glasgow, Scotland, makes for an epic tale of grit, determination, and not a little talent. As an amateur and, at 49, the oldest female competitor, Yuko and her partner Tuck Chan didn’t win, but she did compete, ending a yearlong, ten country, ten tournament quest and fulfilling a lifelong dream. And she credits her Ashaway ZyMax® 66 Fire Badminton string with helping her along the way.

A self-confessed “badminton nerd,” Yuko is the mother of three children, Assistant Director of Nursing at El Camino, Chair of the Junior Badminton program at the Manhattan Beach Badminton Club, and an Ashaway sponsored player. She and Tuck compete in mixed doubles and her quest to qualify for the World’s, “was like a bucket list kind of thing. My intention originally was just to have the chance to do it. What an amazing opportunity!”

And an amazing experience as well. In addition to traveling all over the world, Yuko and Tuck got to experience the world of professional badminton. “You know,” she said, “anybody who looks at us knows we’re not ever going to be on the podium at an international tournament. I was the oldest lady in Glasgow! But all the players on tour were just wonderful to us. They were super supportive and very, very nice and we just developed a really nice rapport with a lot of the people we had to compete against. That was really cool.”

“It was also great having a string sponsor,” she said, and being able to rely on the consistency of her Ashaway ZyMax 66 Fire. “It was fabulous. No matter where we were, with humidity, no humidity, crazy hot or crazy cold with air conditioning, the string was great. It was never spongy, it was super reliable. It was always consistent and easy to string.”

Both ZyMax 66 Fire and it sister string 66 Fire Power are available in traditional white and in a distinctive “Fire” orange color, and in either 10-meter sets or 200-meter reels. Recommended stringing tension is up to 35 lbs.

Ashaway Racket Strings are made by Ashaway Line & Twine Mfg. Co., the only U.S. manufacturer of string for squash, tennis, racquetball, and badminton. Operated by the Crandall family since 1824, Ashaway has been making racquet strings since 1949, and is responsible for several important technical innovations. Ashaway has been the Official String of USA Racquetball for more than fifteen years. Ashaway Line & Twine Mfg. Co. also makes braided products for medical and industrial applications. For more information visit