Kuala Lumpur: Lee Chong Wei, Lin Dan and Li Xuerui will not be playing in the World Super Series Finals in Dubai that was scheduled to kick off from December 9 to December 13. According to Badminton World Federation (BWF), they only select the top eight shuttlers after the 12 legs of Tournament to compete in the finale and each country can have a maximum of two players.
Even though Lee Chong Wei has won three consecutive Superseries titles in France, China and Hong Kong, and clawed his way back to fourth position in the world ranking, but his strong finish at the end of the year has come a little bit too late after the official registration period has ended.
As for Lin Dan, BWF confirmed that Lin has withdrew from the US$1mil (RM4.2mil) Dubai World Superseries Finals due to injury and the vacancy will be filled by China’s Tian Houwei.
The current women’s singles World No. 3 Li Xuerui also missed the cut because China has decided to send Wang Shixian and Wang Yihan to the tournament. As mentioned earlier, no country can field more than two singles players or pairs per category.
Meanwhile, men’s doubles event will bring a breathtaking intensity to the event, with top ranked red-hot pair Lee Yong Dae/Yoo Yeon Seong of Korea, the current World Champions Mohammed Ahsan and Hendra Setiawan of Indonesia, and Mathias Boe/Carsten Mogensen of Denmark are all bidding for the men’s doubles title.
With eleven different teams winning the twelve titles on offer this year, it’s going to be a wide open competition and serious fights are expected in the women’s doubles category. BWF also confirmed on Monday that Reika Kakiiwa/Miyuki Maeda of Japan have pulled out of the tournament and have been replaced by compatriots Naoko Fukuman/Kurumi Yonao.
In Mixed Doubles, China’s World Champions and World Superseries Finals defending champions Zhang Nan and Zhao Yunlei are undoubtedly a surefire favorite. Denmark’s Joachim Fischer Nielsen and Christinna Pedersen is the only mixed doubles pair that could pose the greatest threat to Zhao/Zhang as they have beaten the Chinese pair in a grueling Japan Open final with 17-21, 21-18, 23-21. Korea’s Ko Sung Hyun and Kim Ha Na who won the Denmark and French Opens, and England’s Chris and Gabrielle Adcock are also strong contenders for the mixed doubles crown.