For Team VICTOR Indonesia’s Tontowi Ahmad
and Liliyana Natsir
, Birmingham was where the new chapter began for them. They won their first Superseries Premier title here at the All England back in 2012 and have posted a 19-1 tournament record since, only were tripped up in the final stage last year. They will be the second seeds of the 2016 event; familiar foes, Chinese No.1 Zhang/Zhao are at the top of the draw and the two will only be going to meet on Sunday.
Korea’s fan favorites, “Gentle Monster” Ko Sung Hyun
and the shy and sweet Kim Ha Na
continued their winning ways at the German Open GPG last week, after an all-conquering second-half of 2015 when they became #TheRealDeal
at the Denmark Open Superseries Premier and French Open Superseries. They’ve also swept away two GPG titles in Taipei, Taiwan and Jeonju, Korea, before they capped off the great year with another silver medal at the Dubai Finals.
Ko Sung Hyun
and Kim Ha Na
’s impressive rise has seen them topping the list on BWF’s Race to Rio. Also leading the pace among the VICTOR roster are doubles stars Lee Yong Dae
and Yoo Yeon Seong
, who played in the German Open as well as a tune-up and only lost in the final to good friends and compatriots Ko and Shin Baek Choel
(L) and Lee
(M) were the runners at last week's German Open to their former partners Shin
(R) and Ko
. (Credit: Badmintonphoto)
Malaysia’s Chan Peng Soon
and Goh Liu Ying
are edging closer to an Olympic Games return. The former World No.3 and 2012 London qualifiers suffered a major hit when Goh was forced out of the tour with a nagging right knee injury in 2014. She came back with Chan after a surgery in 2015, with zero ranking points; however, the two have been inching their ways back up with a hustling schedule and are now sitting at the thirteenth place in the BWF’s Race to Rio rankings. The Games will feature a 16-team format.
There will be hard work ahead, however, if they want to be moving even higher after this week in one of the most prestigious events in Birmingham, as they’ve got an unfortunate spot to open against Ko Sung Hyun
/Kim Ha Na
Goh Liu Ying and Chan Peng Soon talk Olympic dreams in "The VICTOR Tour: Expedition"
(L) and Chan
currently sit as high as no.9 on BWF's Race to Rio.
mounts a comeback after a potentially devastating right knee injury.
Goh and Chan are featured in "VICTOR Formula
", demostrating doubles training methods as coached by VICTOR brand consultant Morten Frost