Home to Hong Kong to pack for Dubai?

The entry lists for the BWF World Superseries Finals in Dubai are all but decided.  Only two spots changed hands in the penultimate week but 15 are awaiting the confirmation […]

The entry lists for the BWF World Finals in Dubai are all but decided.  Only two spots changed hands in the penultimate week but 15 are awaiting the confirmation that will only come in the 12th and final Superseries event in Hong Kong.

Photos: Badmintonphoto

2015 is the first year of a new rule that guarantees a spot in the BWF for the reigning World Champions, a provision that will ensure the Olympic gold medallists all get their shot at the big money at the end of 2016 as well.  Unfortunately, this article is the first on Badzine this year to take this new rule fully into account.

What the World Champion wild card rule means is that even before the China Open, there were a total of 12 players who had clinched their tickets to Dubai, not eight as reported earlier.  In other words, only Chen Long had mathematically distanced himself sufficiently from the chase pack such that he could withdraw from the last two tournaments and still only be caught but other members of the top 8, and not by both of his top 8 compatriots.

The wild cards will, of course, be given to the remaining four World Champions but most of these have the needed numbers anyway with their points from the China Open.  The only exception is two-time World Champions Tian Qing / Zhao Yunlei.  Not only have they not clinched a Dubai spot based on their points from 2015 Superseries results, but they do not have a chance of catching current #8 pair Go Ah Ra / Yoo Hae Won, even with a victory in Hong Kong.

The major impact of the China Open has been to consolidate more of the Dubai tickets.  The number of mathematically clinched (or guaranteed with wild card) spots has grown from 12 to 25 and another 3 will be clinched when Lin Dan, Conrad-Petersen/Pieler Kolding, and Kim/Kim step on court in Hong Kong for their first round matches.

Hong Kong players centre stage at home?

The only Dubai spots that actually changed hands in Fuzhou were in men’s doubles and singles.  Kim Ki Jung / Kim Sa Rang (pictured) went all the way for the title but it was actually their first round win that put them in 8th spot.  Winning the tournament means that simply showing up on Wednesday for their match would ensure their invitation to Dubai, which also means that even if they don’t, one of the two chasing pairs would have to win the tournament in order to unseat the Koreans.

In men’s singles, Hong Kong’s own Hu Yun (pictured top) passed three players with his first round win in China but he is still within reach of three in the chase pack.  The last two, Hsu Jen Hao of Chinese Taipei and Hu’s compatriot Wong Wing Ki, will be eliminated as soon as Srikanth appears for his first match in Hong Kong.

Current #10 Tommy Sugiarto is neck-and-neck with Srikanth and there is a good chance that the Hong Kong results will determine who gets the last spot.  However, not far behind are China Open semi-finalist and Hong Kong Open defending Son Wan Ho, along with Hong Kong’s #2 shuttler Wei Nan (pictured).  Still, if Srikanth wins even one match, Wei Nan would have to win his home Superseries to qualify for Dubai.

In mixed doubles, the only competition left is among compatriots.  Lu/Huang are all but eliminated for the second China spot but Xu Chen and Ma Jin could still reel in Liu Cheng / Bao Yixin.

The last remaining pair in the chase pack is Chan Yun Lung / Tse Ying Suet, who need a miracle at home to catch compatriots Lee Chun Hei / Chau Hoi Wah (pictured below).  The top Hong Kong pair need two victories, or a loss by Chan/Tse, to secure their invitation to the Finals.

Finally, five of the forty players and pairs tentatively qualified for Dubai are currently entered in the U.S. Grand Prix event in the same week as the Superseries Finals.  There has been no official word on how this will affect Dubai invitations.  (For more on this, see related article here)

In the following tables, I am using a conservative definition of ‘clinch’ – marked on the table in bold italics – that entails a top 8 player having enough points to be out of reach of the 9th place player or pair even should the latter win and the former be unable to play in the first round in Hong Kong.

I have shown in bold the 8 players and pairs who would qualify were the Superseries to end after the first 11 tournaments.  I have shown in grey the players or pairs who cannot enter the top 8 or who cannot catch two higher-ranked compatriots.  Finally, I have marked with an ‘x’ those who will be inactive at the Hong Kong Open, and with a ‘GP’ those who are entered in another event the week of the Superseries Finals.

The numbers are based on calculations to include points earned from the China Open but the official Superseries standings will be available later in the week from the BWF website.

Men’s singles
1  Chen Long (CHN) – 74000 [World Champion]
2  Kento Momota (JPN) – 63490
3  Jan Jorgensen (DEN) – 58540
4  Viktor Axelsen (DEN) – 57940
5  Lin Dan (CHN) – 55740
6  Chou Tien Chen (TPE) – 53450
7  Tian Houwei (CHN) – 46590
8  Hu Yun (HKG) – 44710
9  K. Srikanth (IND) – 42720
10  Tommy Sugiarto (INA) – 42530
11  Wang Zhengming (CHN) – 40880
12  Kashyap Parupalli (IND) – 40440 x
13  Wei Nan (HKG) – 37600
14  Son Wan Ho (KOR) – 36960 [GP]
15  Hsu Jen Hao (TPE) – 34640 [GP]
16  Wong Wing Ki (HKG) – 33860
17  H. S. Prannoy (IND) – 33460

Mixed doubles
1  Zhang Nan / Zhao Yunlei (CHN) – 72870 [World Champions]
2  Ko Sung Hyun / Kim Ha Na (KOR) – 66970 [GP]
3  Liu Cheng / Bao Yixin (CHN) – 65590
4  Tantowi Ahmad / Lilyana Natsir (INA) – 64660
5  Joachim Fischer-Nielsen / Christinna Pedersen (DEN) – 64140 x
6  Xu Chen / Ma Jin (CHN) – 61900
7  Lu Kai / Huang Yaqiong (CHN) – 58290
8  Chris Adcock / Gabrielle Adcock (ENG) – 58210
9  Praveen Jordan / Debby Susanto (INA) – 52290
10  Lee Chun Hei / Chau Hoi Wah (HKG) – 42720
11  Chan Yun Lung /  Tse Ying Suet (HKG) – 37120
12  Kenichi Hayakawa / Misaki Matsutomo (JPN) – 31080

Women’s doubles
1  Luo Ying / Luo Yu (CHN) – 62260
2  Christinna Pedersen / Kamilla Rytter Juhl (DEN) – 56140
3  Misaki Matsutomo / Ayaka Takahashi (JPN) – 53930
4  Nitya Krishinda Maheswari / Gresya Polii (INA) – 52470
5  Eefje Muskens / Selena Piek  (NED) – 42680
6  Reika Kakiiwa / Miyuki Maeda (JPN) – 42610 [GP]
Chae Yoo Jung / Kim So Yeong (KOR) – 40820 [GP]
8  Go Ah Ra / Yoo Hae Won (KOR) – 36340 [GP]
9  Naoko Fukuman / Kurumi Yonao (JPN) – 36020 [GP]
10  Jwala Gutta / Ashwini Ponnappa (IND) – 33520
11  Ma Jin / Tang Yuanting (CHN) – 31860 x
12  Jung Kyung Eun / Shin Seung Chan (KOR) – 30380 [GP]
13  Jang Ye Na / Lee So Hee (KOR) – 30190 [GP]
14  Wang Xiaoli / Yu Yang (CHN) – 28730 x
15  Hsu Ya Ching / Pai Yu Po (TPE) – 27520 [GP]
16  Tang Jinhua / Tian Qing (CHN) – 27440 x

17  Tian Qing / Zhao Yunlei (CHN) – 24750 [World Champions]

Men’s doubles
1  Lee Yong Dae / Yoo Yeon Seong (KOR) – 75210
2  Hiroyuki Endo / Kenichi Hayakawa (JPN) – 64820
3  Fu Haifeng / Zhang Nan (CHN) – 61160
4  Mathias Boe / Carsten Mogensen (DEN) – 59980
5  Chai Biao / Hong Wei (CHN) – 57420
6  Muhammad Ahsan / Hendra Setiawan (INA) – 56800 [World Champions]

7  Mads Conrad Petersen / Mads Pieler Kolding (DEN) – 51720
8  Kim Ki Jung / Kim Sa Rang (KOR) – 51700 [GP]
9  Lee Sheng Mu / Tsai Chia Hsin (TPE) – 43460
10  Liu Xiaolong / Qiu Zihan (CHN) – 43250
11  Angga Pratama / Ricky Karanda Suwardi (INA) – 42830
12  Ko Sung Hyun / Shin Baek Cheol (KOR) – 40300 [GP]

Women’s singles
1  Wang Shixian (CHN) – 70060
2  Carolina Marin (ESP) – 68270 [World Champions]
3  Wang Yihan (CHN) – 61450
4  Li Xuerui (CHN) – 60150
5  Saina Nehwal (IND) – 59650
6  Nozomi Okuhara (JPN) – 53320 [GP]
7  Tai Tzu Ying (TPE) – 52950
8  Ratchanok Intanon (THA) – 51330
9  Sung Ji Hyun (KOR) – 50440
10  Akane Yamaguchi (JPN) – 46750
11  Sun Yu (CHN) – 42570
12  Minatsu Mitani (JPN) – 41950 [GP]
13  Yui Hashimoto (JPN) – 40610 [GP]

Bold – Currently qualified
Bold italics – Guaranteed to qualify
Grey – Can’t qualify
x – Not playing Hong Kong Open
[GP] – Entered in U.S. Grand Prix

Don Hearn

About Don Hearn

Don Hearn is an Editor and Correspondent who hails from a badminton-loving town in rural Canada. He joined the Badzine team in 2006 to provide coverage of the Korean badminton scene and is committed to helping Badzine to promote badminton to the place it deserves as a global sport. Contact him at: don @ badzine.net