Here are some fascinating facts about badminton’s oldest and most prestigious competition for you to know.
- Inaugural edition in 1899 only consisted doubles events; singles were introduced a year later.
- Has been played at eight venues, with the longest run being at the Wembley Arena (1957-1993)
- Sir George Thomas is the most successful athlete with 21 championships.
- Record for consecutive titles belongs to Indonesian men’s singles great Rudy Hartono – seven (1968-1974).
- No athlete has more singles crowns than American Judy Devlin. Ten is her magic number.
- With 189.5 titles across five categories, England sit atop the performance table.
OPEN ERA (1980 ONWARD)
- Doubles legend Gao Ling is the most decorated with 11 wins.
- Li Yongbo/Tian Bingyi are the last men’s pair to finish victors three times (1987, 1988, 1991).
- Either one of Marcus Fernaldi Gideon/Kevin Sanjaya Sukamuljo or Hendra Setiawan/Mohammad Ahsan can equal their achievements this year.
- Despite Indonesia’s pedigree, they have not toasted a men’s singles champion in 28 years. Hariyanto Arbi in 1994 was the previous one to come good.
- Malaysia, meanwhile, have not had success in doubles discipline after Kien Keat Koo/Tan Boon Heong triumphed in 2007.
- Their best chance of ending that drought is also in men’s doubles, where they have two seeded pairs – Aaron Chia/Soh Wooi Yik (4) and Ong Yew Sin/Teo Ee Yi (8) – and the recent YONEX GAINWARD German Open 2022 titlists Goh Sze Fei/Nur Izzuddin.
- Another Malaysian, Lee Zii Jia, stands to become the first back-to-back men’s singles king since compatriot Lee Chong Wei in 2011. It is the longest category not to see a holder defend his/her title.
- Men’s and women’s doubles will have new winners. Mayu Matsumoto/Wakana Nagahara have pulled out while Yuta Watanabe’s partner Hiroyuki Endo retired last year.
- Women’s singles top seed Tai Tzu Ying could become the first player to achieve victory four times since Malaysian icon Lee in 2017.
- Watanabe, who has two titles each in men’s and mixed doubles, can go one better and occupy the top step of the podium for the fifth time. The last shuttler to do so was Yu Yang in 2014.
- Former doubles winners who could succeed with new partners are Misaki Matsutomo (with Yuki Kaneko in mixed doubles), Lee Sohee (Shin Seungchan, women’s doubles) and Zhang Nan (Liu Cheng, men’s doubles). Matsutomo won women’s doubles with Ayaka Takahashi in 2016, Lee with Chang Ye Na a year later. Zhang is a two-time titlist with Zhao Yunlei in mixed doubles (2010, 2015).
- China are the most recent to do a sweep, in 2009, when they ended Denmark’s record that stood from 1948.
- Countries waiting for their maiden All England champion (s) but have seeded entries are Hong Kong China (men’s singles), Thailand (women’s and mixed doubles) and France (mixed doubles).
- India, who have only celebrated victories in men’s singles, can also count on seeds in women’s singles (Pusarla V. Sindhu) and men’s doubles (Satwiksairaj Rankireddy/Chirag Shetty).
- Glory in either will end their 21-year wait for success since Pullela Gopichand became the second Indian to hoist the coveted crown in 2001.
- Mixed pair Nathan Robertson/Gail Emms remain the final home shuttlers to be victorious (2005).
Standout Stat: In 16 subsequent tournaments since Robertson/Emms’ triumph, only pairs from China, Japan and Indonesia have aced the discipline.