Storylines to Embark: Japan Superseries


After a one month hiatus on the schedule after Rio, elite players have returned to the courts and set their goals at the first Superseries major in three months. The Japan Open will go underway Wednesday.



Team VICTOR Malaysia, after their record-breaking Olympic summer, is riding high in confidence and the two silver-winning pairs on the team, Tan Wee Kiong/Goh V Shem in men’s doubles and Chan Peng Soon/Goh Liu Ying in mixed doubles, are both seeded fifth in the Tokyo event. Tan/Goh will be in the hunt for their first major crown together. Chan/Goh was actually a former winner here in 2012, aiming to take their first major title after Goh’s comeback.

Tan Wee Kiong and Goh V Shem will be back in action seeded as high as no.5 after their giant-killing run in Rio last month.

Chan Peng Soon and Goh Liu Ying recorded their first Superseries victory four years ago at the Japan Open.



Team VICTOR’s best hopes in singles, Superseries titlists Son Wan Ho of Korea and Tai Tzu Ying of Taiwan will try to bounce back from their Rio disappointment. Son will open his campaign against the recent World University Championships winner, Team VICTOR next-gen star Wang Tzu Wei. Tai secures a top-4 seeded place and is in a softer section of the bracket, hoping to repeat her 2012 success.


Unlike in other disciplines with weakened line-ups following some post-Olympic changes and chaos, the women’s singles this week features all three medalists from Rio. One of the most anticipated battles will be a quarterfinal rematch between Carolina Marin and P. V. Sindhu. Marin bested Sindhu in a thrilling three-setter to claim Spain’s first Olympic gold. Bronze medalist and defending champion Nozomi Okuhara could face Tai in another blockbuster final-4 showdown.

Korean Son Wan Ho eyes his third Superseries title.

Tai resets pace and hopes to bounce back from Olympic disappointment.



Some exciting partnerships have forged as players make new career plans after the Olympic mission was completed.


Korean veterans Ko Sung Hyun and Kim Gi Jung have teamed up for the first time since 2009. Ko parted ways with Shin Baek Choel; the Kims also split with Kim Sa Rang announcing retirement from international play due to persisting injuries.


Also making a fresh appearance on the Tour is Taiwanese no.1 Lee Sheng Mu and 21-year-old Wu Hsiao Lin.

Former no.1 men’s doubles player Ko Sung Hyun teams up with Kim Gi Jung.

Kim Gi Jung last played alongside Ko Sung Hyun in an international event seven years from now.