The biggest tournament of 2010 to date has provided the best field of the year to date and the first appearance of Lin Dan of 2010. Lee Chong Wei is in ominous form after winning the opening two Super Series events of the year and Peter Gade has peaked himself for this tournament. It is the one that every player wants to win.
#1 Seed: Lee Chong Wei
Round 1 Opponent: Chetan Anand (India)
He is the form player of 2010, unbeaten in Super Series this year and is in the best form of his career coming into the All England Championships. The big question is over his ability to defeat the current champion Lin Dan and win this title for the first time in his career. He faces a challenging route to the final, with Jan O Jorgensen, Peter Gade and Taufik Hidayat in his half of the draw.
#2 Seed: Lin Dan
Round 1 Opponent: Qualifier
He fell off the badminton radar since his Chinese Super Series win in November and threaten a return in Malaysia only to pull out before the event. His potential route to the final is a Chinese wall of Bao Chunlai and Chen Jin but even as the #2 seed and not playing a competitive match for almost 4 months, he is still the massive favourite to win this title.
#5 Seed: Peter Gade
Round 1 Opponent: Dicky Palyama (Netherlands)
It was 11 long years ago from Gade’s only All England title and at 33, this could be his last chance to claim title #2. He has focused his entire year to date in winning this title and has claimed that he is at the peak of his form coming into the event. He is coming off a small role in Denmark’s Team Championship success in Poland last month and a runner-up spot in the Korean Super Series but his route to the final is perhaps the hardest in the draw, not to mention Dicky Palyama beat Gade at the All Englands a few years back.
#1 Seed: Wang Yihan
Round 1 Opponent: Ella Diehl (Russia)
The 2009 Champion has taken almost 6 weeks off since her surprise loss to Bae Youn Joo in the Malaysian Super Series and most likely redoubled her training to give herself the best chance to retain her All England crown. In a draw loaded with Chinese talent, she is still the one to beat here.
Every other Chinese lady in the draw.
Such is the depth of quality that the Chinese have in this discipline that any of the Chinese ladies in the main draw have a legitimate chance to win this title. Wang Xin, winner of the Malaysian Super Series is seeded 5. Wang Shixian, winner of the Korean Super Series is unseeded. Current world champion Lu Lan is seeded 6th for the event and there’s still Wang Lin and Jiang Yanjiao is seeded #3 also.
Unseeded: Tine Rasmussen
Round 1 Opponent: Kim Hi Moon (Korea)
The 2009 runner-up was out of action for 6 months with a heel injury and suffered a massive drop off in her ranking points to lose her seeding the 2010 All Englands. She is the big European hope for the title, but faces a mammoth task to reach the final with the 2nd seed Wang Lin waiting in Round 2 and potentially Lu Lan in the Quarter Finals.
#1 Seeds: Koo and Tan
Round 1 Opponents: Paaske and Rasmussen (Denmark)
The first round match is perhaps one of the matches of the opening round of any of the five disciplines but they are coming in to the event off the back of their Malaysian Super Series victory
#2 Seeds : Lee and Jung
Round 1 Opponents: Qualifier
The Korean Super Series champions come into the competition after a shock round 1 exit in Malaysia. The question of what pair appears at the All England will determine how far they go, will it be the pair that defeated Cai and Fu in Korean or the pair that suffered a shock round 1 defeat?
#5 Seeds: Cai and Fu
Round 1 Opponents: Ahsan and Septano (Indonesia)
The 2009 winners and current world champions haven’t played a match since their Korean Super Series final loss to Lee and Jung and are not in the draw for the Swiss Super Series next week so it seems like they are focussing all their effort into defending their All England title and with a rematch with Lee and Jung at the semi final stage in this weeks event.
#1 Seeds: Du and Yu
Round 1 Opponents: Matsutomo and Takahashi
The Malaysian Super Series winners play only their second event of 2010 after defeating Ma and Wang in their first event of this year. The draw has been favourable to them in that the other two seeded Chinese pairs are in the bottom half of the draw but a potential second round match with Vislova and Sorokina could test them early in the competition.
#2: Ma and Wang
Round 1 Opponents: Reid and Grether (Canada/Germany)
The top seeds in Malaysia will have to settle for the #2 seed this week, but are coming off a win in last weeks German Open against the 3rd seeded Cheng and Zhao, who they could face in the semi finals this week and then possible revenge for their Malaysian Super Series loss.
#1 Seed: Ma and Zheng
Round 1 Opponents: Ko and Ha
This is their first outing of 2010 after pulling out of the Malaysian Super Series, very much like Lin Dan did. However they do not have the domination of Lin Dan and there is several other Chinese partnerships capable of defeating them if they have another off-form day like in the 2009.
#3 Seed: Lee and Lee
Round 1 Opponents: Liao and Chen (Chinese Taipei)
The 2008 Olympic Champions have had a difficult 2010 to date, losing in the opening round of their home event in Korea and then having to pull out the next week in Malaysia. Lee Hyo Jung is solely playing mixed doubles in the event and has been for the entire year so this is her only chance to win this week.
Qualifying begins Tuesday at 12 noon
Round 1 begins Wednesday at 10am