Well … partially explained, anyway. Certainly better than the “some teams were bad guys” explanation in the legacy media.
Here’s how it worked. The women’s pairs badminton tournament is in two rounds.
The first is a round-robin. You do not not have to win every game here to go on to the second round. But, your performance here does determine your seeding in the final round.
The final round is in elimination format.
What happened is that the expected silver medal pair was upset in the round robin. This put a very good pair in a position in the elimination round where no one expected them to be.
Instead of being lined up so that they would presumably play (and beat) the weaker pairs until the finals, they were instead right in the thick of things.
It’s as if in the NCAA’s March Madness opening weekend, a very good team that should have been seeded # 2 was instead seeded in the 4-7 range. This would make their job harder because they’d be playing better teams. But, it wouldn’t make the other teams happy because they’d have to play a tougher opponent earlier.
In this case, those weaker pairs started throwing matches so they would have a better chance of advancing further in the elimination round.