Former world #1′s Kamilla Rytter Juhl, Lee Yong Dae, and Chin Eei Hui will be making their first post-Olympic appearances with their expected new partners at the 2012 Yonex Denmark Open Superseries Premier but the Odense spectators are still in for plenty of action from badminton’s old guard.
The entries are in for the first Superseries Premier badminton tournament since the Olympic Games. Unlike the two legs of the OSIM BWF Superseries being held this month, in China and Japan, the Premier events involve compulsory attendance for the world’s top echelon and that makes this our first definitive look at what the post-London badminton world will look like.
As always, the post-Olympic period brings plenty of retirements. Thomas Laybourn has now moved on and Kamilla Rytter Juhl is instead entered with Mads Pieler Kolding. Another change in mixed comes as Malaysia’s Chin Eei Hui – whose women’s doubles partner Wong Pei Tty retired – will have her first outing with backcourt specialist Tan Boon Heong. Ashwini Ponnappa is in a similar position and during Jwala Gutta’s sabbatical, she will play mixed with Tarun Kona. Ponnappa is not entered in women’s doubles, though, while Chin will be taking on that challenge as well, with Goh Liu Ying.
In men’s doubles, Jung Jae Sung’s retirement has put Lee Yong Dae in league with a new partner and he shows up with Ko Sung Hyun – as the Korean coaching staff signalled earlier this week – and Yoo Yeon Seong will play with Shin Baek Cheol. Also as reported recently, both Markis Kido and Hendra Setiawan will be continuing with new partners after debuting in Japan next week.
Though their future may have been uncertain of late, Koo Kien Keat and Tan Boon Heong are still slated to compete in Denmark. Meanwhile, the other half of Denmark’s erstwhile #2 pair will also have a new partner. Jonas Rasmussen will play with Joachim Fischer Nielsen after Mads Conrad Petersen already debuted this week with Rasmus Bonde. In fact, Koo/Tan and the two Olympic finalists are the only three pairs from the current top ten to appear intact in Denmark.
While the women’s doubles squads of Korea and Indonesia have been decimated by the fallout from the Olympic match-throwing scandal, perhaps the most interesting inclusion is that of Wang Xiaoli and Yu Yang, who made a much-publicized declaration during the Olympics that she was retiring due to the same incident. It is true that Wang and Yu had originally entered the China Masters, only to withdraw later, but it is quite possible that that entry was sent in before their disqualification in London.
China is the source of one exclusion as well, as two-time Olympic champion Lin Dan is the only top singles name missing, apart from the retired Lee Hyun Il.
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