10 Superseries winners yet to book spots for Dubai

The results are in for the first 8 events in the BWF World Superseries and winners of 10 of 40 titles awarded so far still lie outside the current top […]

The results are in for the first 8 events in the BWF World and winners of 10 of 40 titles awarded so far still lie outside the current top 8 who temporarily appear to be destined for Dubai.

Photos: Badmintonphoto

It’s been a very interesting year so far for the BWF World Superseries.  In men’s and women’s doubles, the first six tournaments produced 6 different winners.  Since then, women’s singles has increased such that its 8 titles have also been distributed among six players, while women’s doubles has still not had a repeat title performance by any pair and only one player, Tang Yuanting, has won two titles.

What all this means is that as we come down to the last third of the Superseries ‘regular season’, the race is still wide open for many of the top 8 placings in each discipline, the distinction a player or pair needs to achieve in order to get a ticket to Dubai, where they can compete for their share of badminton’s only million-dollar prize purse, as well as a maximum of 11,000 points toward their Olympic qualification effort.

None of the players have mathematically clinched their Dubai berths.  We can’t consider a place to be clinched unless the player or pair ranked #9 is more than 40,400 points behind.  In other words, even Zhang Nan and Zhao Yunlei could not sit out the rest of the autumn and still be 100% certain of qualifying because the #9 mixed pair could still could theoretically pass them with four titles.

That said, Zhang and Zhao are by far the closest, as they are nearly 30,000 points ahead of Hong Kong’s Chan and Tse.  Wang Shixian, by contrast, is only about 13,000 points ahead of women’s singles #9 Sun Yu (pictured above).

With her Korea Open victory, Korea’s Sung Ji Hyun (pictured below) moves up 3 spots to #10 but she and Singapore Open champion Sun Yu are just shy of Akane Yamaguchi and Sun is actually a long way from where she would have to be, as she would have to pass #3 Wang Yihan to take China’s second spot.

1  Wang Shixian (CHN) – 48510
2  Carolina Marin (ESP) – 45320
3  Wang Yihan (CHN) – 44100
4  Ratchanok Intanon (THA) – 42250
5  Saina Nehwal (IND) – 40940
6  Nozomi Okuhara (JPN) – 37910
7  Tai Tzu Ying (TPE) – 36160
8  Akane Yamaguchi (JPN) – 35890

9  Sun Yu (CHN) – 35030 *
10  Sung Ji Hyun (KOR) – 34470
11  Li Xuerui (CHN) – 33110 *

Men’s singles is one of only two disciplines where four of the first eight titles went to a single victor.  But while Chen Long has one of the biggest margins over a #2 player in any of the five disciplines, India Open winner Kidambi Srikanth (pictured) is a mere 110 points shy of the #8 spot currently occupied by Chou Tien Chen.  However, Srikanth would still be the 8th player to go, were the race to end at this point.  Higher-ranked Tian Houwei, is the third Chinese player, would not be selected.

1  Chen Long (CHN) – 53650
2  Kento Momota (JPN) – 49520
3  Viktor Axelsen (DEN) – 40590
4  Jan Jorgensen (DEN) – 40020
5  Lin Dan (CHN) – 39770
6  Tian Houwei (CHN) – 34570
7  Kashyap Parupalli (IND) – 34180
8  Chou Tien Chen (TPE) – 33630

9  K. Srikanth (IND) – 33520
10  Hu Yun (HKG) – 32120

Like women’s singles, men’s doubles also has two pairs who have won Superseries tournaments but who are not presently in the top eight.  Singapore Open champions Angga Pratama / Ricky Karanda Suwardi (pictured) are only a few hundred points away but Indonesia Open winners Ko Sung Hyun / Shin Baek Cheol (pictured below) of Korea are way down in the chase pack.

In fact, neither Korea nor Indonesia has two pairs in the top eight at present, despite the fact that those two nations have won all but the first two titles in the discipline in 2015 and that each nation has had two pairs win.  Instead, it is China and Denmark who have two pairs set to qualify as things stand right now.

Korea’s Kim Ki Jung / Kim Sa Rang do move up from 17th to 11th in the Superseries standings, with their runner-up finish in Seoul, but they will have to keep performing if they want to make their first trip to Dubai.

1  Lee Yong Dae / Yoo Yeon Seong (KOR) – 52350
2  Fu Haifeng / Zhang Nan (CHN) – 48420
3  Hiroyuki Endo / Kenichi Hayakawa (JPN) – 47760
4  Muhammad Ahsan / Hendra Setiawan (INA) – 41740
5  Mathias Boe / Carsten Mogensen (DEN) – 41190
6  Chai Biao / Hong Wei (CHN) – 39800
7  Mads Conrad Petersen / Mads Pieler Kolding (DEN) – 38600
8  Lee Sheng Mu / Tsai Chia Hsin (TPE) – 32530

9  Angga Pratama / Ricky Karanda Suwardi (INA) – 32250
10  Liu Xiaolong / Qiu Zihan (CHN) – 30660 *
11  Kim Ki Jung / Kim Sa Rang (KOR) – 29960
12  Hirokatsu Hashimoto / Noriyasu Hirata (JPN) – 27700
13  Wahyu Nayaka Arya Pankaryanira / Ade Yusuf (INA) – 25830
14  Goh V. Shem / Tan Wee Kiong (MAS) – 25760
15  Takeshi Kamura / Keigo Sonoda (JPN) – 25290
16  Anders Skaarup Rasmussen / Kim Astrup Sorensen (DEN) – 24880 *
17  Ko Sung Hyun / Shin Baek Cheol (KOR) – 24680

The mixed doubles has one pair with a Superseries title but tentatively no ticket for Dubai.  However, Indonesia Open winners Xu Chen / Ma Jin (pictured) of China are actually firmly in the top 8.  What would keep them home, were the standings to remain as they are, would merely be the superior performance of their compatriots Zhang/Zhao and also Liu Cheng / Bao Yixin.

1  Zhang Nan / Zhao Yunlei (CHN) – 57550
2  Tantowi Ahmad / Lilyana Natsir (INA) – 50430
3  Liu Cheng / Bao Yixin (CHN) – 45150
4  Joachim Fischer-Nielsen / Christinna Pedersen (DEN) – 43490

5  Xu Chen / Ma Jin (CHN) – 43110  *
6  Ko Sung Hyun / Kim Ha Na (KOR) – 42450
7  Lu Kai / Huang Yaqiong (CHN) – 41500 *
8  Chris Adcock / Gabrielle Adcock (ENG) – 39690
9  Praveen Jordan / Debby Susanto (INA) – 34120
10  Lee Chun Hei / Chau Hoi Wah (HKG) – 32140

11  Chan Yun Lung /  Tse Ying Suet (HKG) – 27920

The women’s doubles is, predictably, the most wide open.  Of the 2015 tournament winners, only Luo/Luo, Matsutomo/Takahashi, and Polii/Maheswari are also currently in the top 8.  Team China has continued to dominate this discipline but has done it with a great variety of pairs.

Not only are most of the winning Chinese pairs outside of the top 8 in the current standings but of the 5, only one – Ma Jin / Tang Yuanting – is slated to appear in the next two Superseries events.  World Champions Tian Qing and Zhao Yunlei, meanwhile, are entered in the Denmark and French Opens but have a mere 7700 points so far in the Superseries.

1  Luo Ying / Luo Yu (CHN) – 42360
2  Nitya Krishinda Maheswari / Gresya Polii (INA) – 40730
3  Christinna Pedersen / Kamilla Rytter Juhl (DEN) – 40440
4  Misaki Matsutomo / Ayaka Takahashi (JPN) – 36660
5  Eefje Muskens / Selena Piek  (NED) – 30660
6  Reika Kakiiwa / Miyuki Maeda (JPN) – 30030
7  Wang Xiaoli / Yu Yang (CHN) – 28730

8  Tang Jinhua / Tian Qing (CHN) – 27440 *
9  Chae Yoo Jung / Kim So Yeong (KOR) – 27140
10  Ko A Ra / Yoo Hae Won (KOR) – 25760
11  Naoko Fukuman / Kurumi Yonao (JPN) – 25160
12  Jwala Gutta / Ashwini Ponnappa (IND) – 24600
13  Ma Jin / Tang Yuanting (CHN) – 24160 *
14  Jang Ye Na / Jung Kyung Eun (KOR) – 23530
15  Lee So Hee / Shin Seung Chan (KOR) – 22230
16  Ou Dongni / Yu Xiaohan (CHN) – 21940

Please note that the numbers above have been produced using the BWF Destination Dubai Rankings.  These standings are unofficial, and are merely in anticipation of the official standings, which are available at this link.

Expected qualifiers are shown in bold, while reserve players are marked with an asterisk (*) if they would be called up only if their compatriots were to decline their invitation to Dubai.

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