Sunday, 21 Jul 2024

News | BWF World Tour

Viktor Axelsen, the celebrated badminton player, will be the center of attention on the opening day of the 125th year of the YONEX All England tournament when he faces off against his familiar rival, Kidambi Srikanth.

To commemorate its 125th year, the All England tournament has undergone a visual transformation this year, with light gray courts replacing the traditional green ones. This change has added to the allure surrounding the performances on the opening day.

Axelsen, known for his consistent victories in recent years, finds himself without a title in March due to a foot injury. He has only participated in two events so far – the PETRONAS Malaysia Open and the YONEX French Open, where he reached the semifinals and the second round, respectively. As the world No.1, Axelsen holds high expectations for himself at the All England, a tournament where he has a stellar track record, having won two out of four finals in the last five years.

Kidambi, Axelsen’s first-round opponent, may prove to be a challenging match. Although the Indian player hasn’t defeated the Dane in over six years, Kidambi showcased excellent form last week in France. The opportunity to take down the world’s best player on one of the world’s biggest stages will undoubtedly motivate him.

The defending champion, Li Shi Feng, known for his memorable cartwheel celebration after last year’s final victory over Shi Yu Qi, will also be in action on this day. As the third seed, he will face Toma Junior Popov.

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Only one withdrawal has been reported in the men’s singles category. Malaysia’s Ng Tze Yong, who caused an upset by defeating Axelsen in the second round last year, has withdrawn due to injury. He has been replaced by up-and-coming Danish player Magnus Johannesen, who caused a sensation last week by defeating Lee Zii Jia.

Other feature matches scheduled for today include Muhammad Shohibul Fikri/Bagas Maulana, the men’s doubles winners in 2023, facing Alexander Dunn/Adam Hall. The Indonesian duo is currently ranked 10th in the Race to Paris and will need to secure their place among the top eight, along with their higher-ranked compatriots Fajar Alfian/Muhammad Rian Ardianto, in order to qualify for Paris.

As the window for Olympic qualification narrows, numerous players and pairs will be looking to make a strong impression at the All England to enhance their chances. Han Yue, vying for China’s second spot in women’s singles alongside He Bing Jiao, faces a tough opponent in Supanida Katethong in the opening round.

Christo Popov, following his victory at the YONEX German Open, has moved ahead of his brother Toma Junior in the rankings. The younger Popov will take on Lee Cheuk Yiu, the runner-up at the YONEX-SUNRISE India Open.

In women’s singles, Pusarla V Sindhu, who showed glimpses of her best form last week after her injury troubles of the previous year, will kickstart her campaign against Yvonne Li.

Treesa Jolly and Gayatri Gopichand Pullela, with their impressive track record at the All England tournament, having reached the semifinals twice before, face a challenging opening match against Apriyani Rahayu/Siti Fadia Silva Ramadhanti.

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For the detailed schedule, refer to the official event website.

FAQs

Q: Who will Viktor Axelsen be playing against on the opening day of the YONEX All England tournament?
A: Viktor Axelsen will be facing his familiar rival, Kidambi Srikanth, on the opening day.

Q: What is the significance of the 125th year of the All England tournament?
A: To commemorate its 125th year, the All England tournament has introduced changes in its visual aesthetics, featuring light gray courts instead of the traditional green ones.

Q: How has Viktor Axelsen been performing recently?
A: Due to a foot injury, Axelsen has only competed in two events – the PETRONAS Malaysia Open and the YONEX French Open. He reached the semifinals and the second round, respectively, in these tournaments.

Q: Who is the defending champion at the All England tournament?
A: Li Shi Feng, known for his memorable cartwheel celebration, is the defending champion at the All England tournament.

Summary

The YONEX All England tournament celebrates its 125th year with exciting matchups and a fresh new look. Viktor Axelsen, the world No.1, aims to add another title to his impressive record at the tournament. However, he faces a tricky challenge in the form of Kidambi Srikanth. Defending champion Li Shi Feng and other top players will also grace the courts on the opening day. Exciting feature matches and Olympic qualification battles provide an action-packed day of badminton. Stay tuned for thrilling matches and exceptional performances at the All England tournament.

Don’t miss the chance to witness badminton history unfold; visit the official event website for the complete schedule and join us in celebrating 125 years of the YONEX All England tournament.

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