The second SuperSeries Premier event of 2011 takes place this week in Birmingham as the All England Championships take centre stage this week. Lin Dan is looking to regain his title and take his second Super Series Premier title whilst defending champion Lee Chong Wei will be looking for revenge after his Korea Open defeat to Lin Dan.
Lee Chong Wei is the top seed this week and starts his campaign against Sho Sasaki of Japan before a potential second round match against the winner of Bao Chunlai and Sony Kuncoro, both players have been seeded in Super Series events in the past few years but such is the strength and depth of the draws in the Premier events, they meet in the first round this week. The 8th seed Boonsak Ponsana faces a tough test against Simon Santoso in his first round match and the winner will likely play Joachim Persson of Denmark for a place in the last 8.
Peter Gade is struggling with a left foot injury in the build up to this week and he will be tested early by Hong Kong’s Hu Yun in his opening round match and the difficulty of his matches ramps up with a likely second round match with last years beaten finalist Kenichi Tago waiting in the round 2. Chen Long is seeded 5 this week and starts his campaign against Korea’s Shon Wan Ho before the winner takes on a qualifier in the second round.
Tien Minh Nguyen is seeded 7th this week and takes on Dicky Palyama in Round 1 with the winner taking on the winner of the Du Pengyu and Jan O Jorgensen match in one of the best matches on the opening day of play. Lin Dan starts his campaign against Choong Hann Wong of Malaysia whilst team mate Chen Jin takes on England’s Rajiv Ouseph in his opening round match. Taufik Hidayat is seeded 2 this week and begins his campaign against Kazushi Yamada, a quarter finalist in the world championships last year, with the winner of that match taking on either Park Sung Hwan or Wang Zhengming in the second round.
The big news in the women’s singles is the withdrawal of Tine Baun with a foot injury, the absence of the 4th seed bolsters China’s chances of claiming the title this week with no less than 4 of the top 6 seeds and 7 players in the draw before qualifying. Top seed this week is Wang Shixian, who begins her week with a first round match against Thailand’s Porntip Buranaprasertsuk and then a potential all Chinese second round clash with the German Open winner Liu Xin, if she can overcome Scotland’s Susan Egelstaff in her first round match.
3rd seed Wang Xin starts against Mew Choo Wong before she herself has a potential second round all-Chinese matchup against Li Xuerui if the unseeded Chinese player can defeat a qualifier in her opening round match. 6th seeded Jiang Yanjiao takes on Jie Yao of Holland in her opening round match before potentially taking on her team mate and 2009 world champion Lu Lan in her second round match, if she can defeat Sayaka Sato of Japan.
2nd seeded Wang Yihan is in the half of the draw that Tine Baun was supposed to be in and her first round match is against Salakjit Ponsana before potentially taking on the winner of Ella Diehl and Eriko Hirose in the second round. 5th seeded Saina Nehwal starts her campaign with a tough opener against Bae Sueng Hee of Korea and a potential quarter final match against Wang Yihan awaits.
The men’s doubles is one of the most unpredictable events this week to pick a winner from, from top seeded Boe and Mogensen there is past winners throughout the draw as well as world champions. The top seeds begin with against Chinese pairing of Wei and Ye before the prospect of an all-Danish second round match against Rasmussen and Conrad-Petersen.
English pairing of Ellis and Adcock have the unenviable task of taking on the Korean pair of Lee and Jung in their opening round match, with the Korea’s being in excellent form recently, winning the German Open at the weekend. There is a battle of world champions as 2010 world champions Cai and Fu take on the 2005 world champions in Bach and Gunawan in the first round this week. The 4th seeds Kido and Setiawan as well as 5th seeded Koo and Tan both await qualifiers in their opening round matches.
Another English pair with an unfortunate draw is Wallwork and White in the women’s doubles, they take on the top seeded Chien and Chang of Chinese Taipei in their opening round. 3rd seeded Wang and Yu take on the Swedish pair of Wengberg and Lennartsson with the likely opponents in the second round being England’s Agathangelou and Olver should they progress past a qualifier in their opening round match.
The bottom section of the draw is the most intriguing, with 2nd seeded Suetsuna and Maeda taking on Danish pair of Pedersen and Rytter Juhl with the winners likely to take on the German Open champions Fujii and Kakiiwa should they beat their Canadian opponents Reid and Grether in their opening round match. There is a Chinese presence in the draw, with Tian and Shao as well as Du and Pan being unseeded in the draw but a real threat this week.
Zhao and Zhang are the top seeds in the mixed doubles draw but there is a distinct lack of Chinese players in an event with a history of Chinese dominance. There is only four Chinese pairs in the main draw and a potential second round match between Zhao and Zhang and He and Yu. Ma and He are the other unseeded pair this week from China and they take on the 6th seeded Ko and Ha of Korea in their opening round match.
There is a potential all-Danish second round match in the bottom section of the draw as Laybourn and Rytter Juhl, seeded 2 this week could take on Pedersen and Fischer Neilsen should both win their opening round matches. The 4th Chinese pair in the draw are the 5th seeded Tian and Jiaming who take on a qualifier in their opening round match this week.