Tang Yuanting, world #2, quits at 22

The most jarring retirement news yet from China emerged today as the Badminton World Federation (BWF) announced on their Facebook page that world #2 women’s doubles player Tang Yuanting was […]

The most jarring news yet from China emerged today as the Badminton World Federation () announced on their Facebook page that world #2 women’s doubles player Tang Yuanting was calling it quits at age 22.

Photos: Badmintonphoto

Yesterday, the BWF confirmed that Tang’s partner Yu Yang, with whom she won three titles and reached the semi-finals of the Rio Olympics, had retired, along with four other veterans.  Yu’s departure from the Chinese national team was more or less expected by many observers even before the Rio Games who could have predicted that the name of the young Tang Yuanting (pictured) would be added to the list the very next day?

Tang Yuanting is very much a new face in world badminton.  Unlike the majority of Chinese stars, she did not debut on the senior stage after a year of junior glory.  Instead, she burst onto the stage to win the 2013 New Zealand Open just a few months before her 19th birthday and a year later, she had already collected her first Superseries title, at the 2014 India Open.  She went on to win two more Superseries titles with Yu Yang, along with one each with Ma Jin and Bao Yixin.  A new partnership with 19-year-old Chen Qingchen, with whom she won two key matches at this year’s Uber Cup finals, was among the most exciting new pairings in the post-Rio period but they were withdrawn from the Japan and Korea Opens and Chen will be back with her junior partner Jia Yifan for next month’s Denmark Open.

Also announced today was the retirement of Wang Zhengming (pictured).  Wang Zhengming, 26, was the World Junior Champion in 2008 and he picked up his only Superseries title in 2013 at the China Masters, which also became his last international title when he won the 2015 edition, after it had been transformed into a Gold event.  According to the BWF Facebook page posting, the two players’ ‘official retirements were submitted to BWF this morning by the Chinese Badminton Association’.

We at Badzine wish all of the departing Chinese players success on their new career paths.

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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