The All England Open Championships is a HSBC BWF World Tour Super 1000 tournament and is one of only three Super 1000 level tournaments, the others being the China Open and the Indonesia Open.
The ever first open tournament in the sport was held
at Guilford, England 1898 organised by the Guildford Badminton Club.
This first open tournament was such a success that it encouraged the Badminton
Association of England to organise the inaugural All England Championships which
was held at the London Scottish Drill Hall,
Buckingham Gate, Westminster, London on 4 April 1899, with only
doubles disciplines being contested. At these inaugural championships English
players swept all the titles. The following year singles was added to the
English and Irish players dominated the early history
and special mention should be made to one of the icons in the early years - Sir George Thomas Bart, the founding President of the
IBF who completed his long playing career with 20 titles (4 singles, 8 men’s
doubles and 8 mixed doubles) between 1906 and 1928.
The Championships were suspended from 1915 to 1920
owing to the First World War. In the 1930s more and more overseas players
entered the Championships and in 1938 when a large contingent of Danish players
entered the Championships this would be the last year that English and Irish
players would dominated the event.
In 1957 the Championships moved to the Wembley Arena
for the next 37 years, the longest home for the Championships of any of the
Prior to 1977 the All-England was considered to be the
unofficial World Championships. There were many great players that competed in
the Wembley era, but two of the legends were Judy Hashman from the USA who won
a total of 10 singles titles, a record that has never been surpassed. The other
legend was Indonesian Rudy Hartono who won a total of eight men's singles
titles, again this record has not been surpassed.
In 1993 after a
successful Badminton World Federation World Championships at the National
Indoor Arena (NIA), Birmingham, Badminton England decided the next year to move
the Yonex All England Championships to the NIA.
The All England Championships was a Superseries
tournament from 2007 to 2016 with the period 2011 to 2016 as a Premiere
Superseries status by the BWF. The 100th All England
Championships were celebrated in 2010.
In the more recent history, in 2007 China
grabbed four of the five titles and in 2009, China surpassed this and won all
five disciplines. Lin Dan is one of the more recent iconic players and he won
six men’s singles titles between 2004 and 2016.