Badminton England

The YONEX All England Open is the world’s oldest and most prestigious badminton tournament, now in its 111th year. This year not only celebrates a 38th consecutive year of YONEX title sponsorship, but also 28 years of being staged in Birmingham at this wonderful arena.

Despite all the struggles of the last year, Badminton England have done all they possibly can to ensure the safe and secure running of the Championships. The last time there was no competition was between 1915-1919 and 1939-1947 due to World War 1 and 2.

We’re extremely excited to be the first Super 1000 tournament to be staged in this cycle, following the HSBC BWF World Tour Finals in Bangkok in January. We are also proud to support the pathway to the HSBC World Tour Finals 2021 in Guangzhou, China, later this year.

With no qualification round this year, play will commence on Wednesday when 80 Round of 32 matches will be played from 9am over five courts. Continuing with a round a day, and courts being taken up until the weekend, the tournament culminates in semi-finals and finals being played on just the one central court in Birmingham over Saturday then Sunday respectively. Each winner will be crowned in an earlier than usual finals day (10am-3pm estimated).

Going into this week, the male number two and female number one seeded singles players have won the most recent tournament, the YONEX Swiss Open. Finishing just last Sunday, Carolina Marin and Viktor Axelsen both cruised to victory showing they are in imperious form to live up to their favourites tag next week.

Though Kento Momota has not played much recently (Japan pulled their team out of the Swiss Open due to covid fears and Momota himself tested positive just a few weeks ago), if he can re-find his sensational form from before the global pandemic then even Axelsen would struggle to beat the Japanese star.

It’s an Indonesian one-two atop the men’s doubles seedings as minions Marcus Gideon and Kevin Sukamuljo are followed by Hendra Setiawan and Mohammad Ahsan who sit second. But Hiroyuki Endo and Yuta Watanabe defeated ‘the minions’ in the most electric of finals at last year’s All England, ranked fourth-they should not be underestimated.

Indonesians also top the mixed doubles seedings; Praveen Jordan and Melati Daeva Oktavianti are followed by Japan’s Arisa Higashino and Yuta Watanabe. The latter pair have to contend with two top eight ranked English pairs in the form of Chris and Gabby Adcock (eighth) and Marcus Ellis/Lauren Smith (fourth) in their side of the draw, though it is still to be seen whether home advantage will make much difference behind closed doors.

This summer’s Olympic hosts Japan hold claim to both top women’s doubles pairs for this week. Yuki Fukushima and Sayaka Hirota beat compatriots Misaki Matsutomo and Ayaka Takahashi in last year’s semi-final on their way to taking the All England title. The reigning champions are seeded first this year, and see a different Japanese pair; Mayu Matsumoto and Wakana Nagahara as the second seeds.

All of these first versus second seeds would make titanic finals, but as we know and love about this competition is how rarely it goes to seeding plan-expect plenty of shocks and scares throughout the week-expect the unexpected!


A bit of extra history for the tournament:

First organised on April 4th 1899 at the HQ of the London Scottish Rifles with Doubles only (Singles introduced in 1900).

England last won the Men’s Singles title in 1938 (Ralph Nichols) and the Mixed Doubles title in 2005 (Nathan Robertson & Gail Emms).


You can view the full draw here.

Badminton England TV (BETV) will stream all courts and all matches throughout the event. (UK viewers only)

You can also watch via the BBC Online and BT Sport (schedules to follow).