The Tour travels to Indonesia for the biggest tournament of the season, the BWF World Championships, on Tuesday, as Team VICTOR players Ko Sung Hyun and Shin Baek Choel return to defend their title.
The reigning World Champions haven’t had a lot of badminton while Shin was sidelined with a leg injury and they only reunited in an official tournament not until the Australian Open Superseries in May, where they finished in the quarterfinals as non-seeds. Unseeded again, one week later, they made it on the podium with the gold at the Indonesia Open Superseries Premier, taking down their final rivals in the 2014 World Championships final, Lee Yong Dae and Yoo Yeon Seong en route.
The two teams are on the separate halves this week but Ko/Shin, with a bye in the round of 64, could be facing Malaysia’s no.1 and another pair of VICTOR stars Tan Wee Kiong and Goh V Shem in their first match. It is not any easier for top seeds Lee/Yoo as last year’s semifinalists in Kim Gi Jung/Kim Sa Rang as the 12th seeds fall in their section and only one of the two teams can reach the last 8 this time.
There’s no better place for the big major breakthrough than the Worlds. That was the case for India’s super stars Ashwini Ponnappa
, proudly equipped with VICTOR gears, and her partner Jwala Gutta when they picked up a bronze medal in 2011 at this prestigious tournament and got to a high ranking of world no.13. However, it’s been a tough road with injuries and off-court issues ever since. After four years of persevering and grinding, they are regaining some of their best form following a semifinal showing at the US Open GPG and a victory at the Canada Open GP in June. It’s definitely shaping up nicely that the good friends are due for another breakthrough where it all started.
and Gutta are now at a new career high no.12 coming into Jakarta, saying they are targeting nothing less than a medal. “"Preparations have been great. Jwala had a brief stay in Bengaluru before back training in Hyderabad and we’ve got in a couple of good training sessions.” Ponnappa
told local newspapers. “Our Canada win will be a big boost for us. This time, we're also seeded at the Worlds, it's very important that we take one match at a time.”
Team VICTOR sweetheart Ashwini Ponnappa
(L) and Jwala Gutta, now at a new career high no.12, are seeded 12th this week.
(L) hopes they will regain their medal-winning form four years ago.
Ko Sung Hyun
(L) and Shin Baek Choel
haven't entered any tournament this season until May, but won the Indonesia Open in June at their second event back.
Tan Wee Kiong
(L) and Goh V Shem
haven't got any luck in the draw as they could face the defending champions the earliest possible.
traveld to Jakarta for the 2015 World Champs on Thursday for early preperation.
It's been a breakthrough year for Team VICTOR rookie, Hong Kong's Chau Hoi Wah
2014 BWF Superseries Finals champon Tai Tzu Ying
takes up one of the top four seedings for the first time at the prestigious tournament.